Harcourt is located approximately 9 kilometres northeast of Castlemaine where the Midland Highway meets the Calder Highway, in the Mount Alexander Shire.

Harcourt and the surrounding area has a population of around 840 people.

Set in a lush valley at the foot of Mount Alexander, Harcourt was once the premier apple growing region in Australia (a title yielded to Tasmania some time ago).

Still the apple centre of Victoria, the local area is fast getting a name for wine and cider production.


Water supply

The McCay system services the townships of Castlemaine (which includes Campbells Creek, Chewton, Fryerstown, Guildford and Harcourt) Elphinstone, Taradale, Maldon and Newstead.

The Coliban System (Southern) serves the population of Harcourt.

Raw water is sourced from the McCay Reservoir which has a capacity of around 1360 megalitres. The reservoir is located approximately 3.5 kilometres east of Chewton and is filled from the Malmsbury Reservoir via the Coliban Main Channel.

For further water resource information on the Coliban System (Southern) see our monthly Water Summaries.


Water treatment

Raw water for the townships in this system is treated at the water treatment plant located at the McCay Reservoir.

The treatment process comprises microfiltration, flocculation, ozonation, pH correction, fluoridation and disinfection before storage in a 6 megalitre clearwater tank. The plant has a capacity to treat 18 megalitres a day.

Treated water is supplied to Harcourt via the McCay pipeline.


Harcourt channel system

Harcourt's rural customers are supplied with raw water through the rural channel system. However, we are in the process of modernising the Harcourt rural system and replacing the inefficient rural channel system with a network of pipes has been under consideration for several years.

The project proposed is to replace the existing concrete and earthen gravity channel system with a pressurised pipeline through the Harcourt area and two pump stations located at Faraday and Barkers Creek Reservoir, with a balancing storage tank.

A proposed pipeline alignment (PDF 4.9MB) was developed following investigations and consultation with the community.

The latest information on the project can be found on the Harcourt Rural Modernisation project page.


Projects, planned works and standpipes

View Your Town Map in a larger map


Harcourt Rural System




Where does my sewage go?

Wastewater is collected from Castlemaine, Campbells Creek, Chewton, Harcourt, Newstead and Maldon and is delivered to the Water Reclamation Plant, located in Langslow Street on the west bank of Campbells Creek.

There are 155km of gravity mains and 3km of rising mains in the Castlemaine wastewater system.

The sewer systems for Castlemaine, Chewton and Campbells Creek were constructed in 1939.

The system also collects wastewater from commercial sites in accordance with trade waste agreements and consents. These businesses range in size from cafes to large industries such as Don KR, the local smallgoods manufacturer.

What happens at the water reclamation plant?

Water is treated through a series of processes including screening, biological nutrient removal, aeration, chemical dosing, clarification and UV disinfection.

The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) Victoria licence allows discharge of Class B reclaimed water to Campbells Creek. Around 5 to 10% of this water is provided to the Castlemaine Golf Club for irrigation and a small quantity is taken from a standpipe by local contractors for dust suppression and construction works.

Biosolids produced at Castlemaine are treated and then applied to land by farmers to derive the benefit from the associated nutrients.

The EPA licence specifies conditions for the management of emissions from the site including wastewater quality and odour.


Water restrictions

Permanent Water Saving Rules (PWSR) apply.

PWSR are a set of five common sense water rules that are in place at all times when water restrictions are not in force.



Wright Street, Elphinstone (Google Map)

Fountain Street, Maldon (Google Map)


Pricing information


Currently our region is divided into two separate pricing districts: Central and Northern. Fixed charges remain the same across both pricing districts but customers in each district pay a different rate per kilolitre of water used.


Harcourt is in our Central District which covers our Bendigo, Castlemaine and Kyneton areas, Pyramid Hill, Lockington and towns near the Loddon River.

For full details see our Pricing information page.





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