Laidley is the next of those rich ‘food basket’ towns that provide greater Brisbane with the necessities of life. Laidley is also now growth centre given the close proximity, especially to Ipswich. Laidley is a pretty and old town and heritage is clearly important. Something that was not evident in Gatton.
The local industry has been dominated by agriculture since the end of the 19th century. Laidley has long regarded itself as "Queensland's Country Garden". Fruit and vegetable production features prominently, with the majority of beetroot grown in Australia coming from the Laidley district.
Allan Cunningham first explored the area in 1829 Cunningham named it Laidley's Plain after the Deputy Commissary General of the colony.
The town developed around a wagon stop on the main road route between Ipswich and Toowoomba. A stop was needed after the climb over the small Little Liverpool Range.
By the 1850s the area was being cleared for sheep grazing. In the mid-1870s the railway line from Grandchester stopped at a railway station 1.5 km north of the town.
Between 1911 and 1955, a branch railway line ran from Laidley along the Laidley Creek to the settlement at Mulgowie.