All aboard! Qld rail plans historic journey

Celebrating 150 years of transporting Queenslanders
Celebrating 150 years of transporting Queenslanders Claudia Baxter

IT'S full steam ahead as train buffs from Bundaberg to Mackay get onboard a once in a lifetime opportunity.

With a touch of nostalgia and a spot of history, Queensland Rail will celebrate 150 years of staying on track with a commemorative steam train journey across the state next year.

The iron horses will whistle up a step back in time when they wend their way through Brisbane, Maryborough, Bundaberg, Gladstone, Rockhampton, Mackay, Ayr, Townsville, Ingham, Innisfail, Cairns and Mareeba from Thursday, January 15 to Wednesday, February 15.

More than 60 people have restored the locomotives and their historic wooden carriages.

The organisation's customer service executive general manager, Martin Ryan, said marking the milestone with a traditional twist was important.

"Queensland Rail has a rich history throughout Queensland dating back to 1865 and we hope to spark a few fond memories as the steam train passes up the Queensland coast," Mr Ryan said.

"The pride of Queensland Rail's heritage fleet will be used - including the BB18 ¼ 1079 and BB18 ¼ 1089 steam locomotives - which almost 60 employees and volunteers have been working hard to overhaul, service and rebuild.

"The locomotives were originally built in 1956 and 1958 and will be joined by nine heritage wooden cars, the oldest of which was built in 1902, and a dining car which was built in 1935."

The trains will stop at use heritage stations where possible, he said. 


The steam trains will travel to and from the following locations.

Brisbane to Maryborough - Thursday, January 15.

Maryborough to Bundaberg - Saturday, January 17.

Bundaberg to Gladstone - Tuesday, January 20.

Gladstone to Rockhampton - Wednesday, January 21.

Rockhampton to Mackay - Friday, January 30.

Mackay to Ayr - Sunday, February 1.

Ayr to Townsville - Monday, February 2.

Townsville to Ingham - Wednesday, February 11.

Ingham to Innisfail - Thursday, February 12.

Innisfail to Cairns - Friday, February 13.

Cairns to Mareeba - Monday, February 16.

Mareeba to Cairns - Tuesday, February 17.

Cairns to Townsville - Friday, February 20.

Townsville to Mackay - Saturday, February 21.

Mackay to Rockhampton - Sunday, February 22.

Rockhampton to Bundaberg - Tuesday, February 24.

Bundaberg to Brisbane - Wednesday, February 25.



Topics:  history queensland rail train transport

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