Steam train departs for South West Qld to celebrate 150 years of rail

Published on : Tuesday, June 2, 2015

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Queensland Rail’s heritage steam train will embark on an epic journey from Brisbane to Charleville and back, to celebrate 150 years of rail with South West Queensland communities.

Queensland Rail Executive General Manager Travel and Tourist Martin Ryan said Brisbane residents were encouraged to come down to Roma Street station, Platform 3, to farewell the train from 7.10am.

“Rail has a rich history in Queensland and this is a rare opportunity to take a trip down memory lane, and experience what travel was like in a by-gone era,” Mr Ryan said.

“We are encouraging young and old to dress in period costumes and have their picture taken with the charming steam train and seven restored carriages, making sure you hashtag #Rail150.

“The trip from Brisbane to Charleville and back will take just over a week and will feature Queensland Rail’s heritage steam locomotive AC16, fondly known as the ‘Yank’.

“The Yank was built in 1943 and was one of 20 locomotives brought to Queensland from the United States to help with the Queensland Railway’s efforts during World War II.

“AC16’s have a historical connection to South West Queensland, as they were one of only several locomotive classes able to be used on the tracks west of Roma up until the 1960s.

“Hundreds of hours of painstaking work have gone into overhauling and restoring the Yank and the seven wooden carriages – the oldest of which was built in 1902 – to ensure they are in pristine condition for their journey.

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