Ministerial review of the 'Lander services

 
  locojoe67 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Gen X purgatory/urban Joh-land
The passenger cars do take on water. Charleville Yard has its own tree providing shade for this activity. It can be seen at 9:15 above.

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  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line

What do you mean train takes on water?  Do you mean that literally.
tazzer96

The passenger cars literally take on water at Barcaldine and there are several water hoses mounted on the platforms with reel hoses especially for that task and the train crew gets busy

The cars require water to replace water used in toilet flushing, bathrooms/showers, cooking and food preparation etc.

Historically, Barcaldine had better water quality than Longreach or Winton before filtration was invented hence the cars water replenishment at Barcaldine. Though Longreach these days has excellent water quality.

Mike.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
I arrived in Quilpie yesterday after a week at Thargomindah and things are VERY quiet at the local station. The rails are well rusted and looking along the pit the grass after recent rains is well up through the tracks.

I think it will be well advised for a patrol vehicle to cover the route from Charleville...particularly in view of the recent heavy and flooding rains in this part of Queensland in recent weeks before the next stock train travels on the Great Western line.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Western_Railway,_Queensland

Cunnamulla...how sad that is now with a sole, isolated refrigerator car in the goods yard and the station itself slowly falling into disrepair. I'm cautiously optimistic that of the three remaining covered stations on the QR network, Cunnamulla station with the increasing tourism out west may eventually be taken over and restored into a rail museum by a cashed up person or outside group and supported by government grants. Fortunately the sleepers are all steel and won't be deteriorating.


I tried to post some images...but this clunky old site...Sad

Mike.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
I arrived in Quilpie yesterday after a week at Thargomindah and things are VERY quiet at the local station. The rails are well rusted and looking along the pit the grass after recent rains is well up through the tracks.

I think it will be well advised for a patrol vehicle to cover the route from Charleville...particularly in view of the recent heavy and flooding rains in this part of Queensland in recent weeks before the next stock train travels on the Great Western line.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Western_Railway,_Queensland

Cunnamulla...how sad that is now with a sole, isolated refrigerator car in the goods yard and the station itself slowly falling into disrepair. I'm cautiously optimistic that of the three remaining covered stations on the QR network, Cunnamulla station with the increasing tourism out west may eventually be taken over and restored into a rail museum by a cashed up person or outside group and supported by government grants. Fortunately the sleepers are all steel and won't be deteriorating.


I tried to post some images...but this clunky old site...Sad

Mike.
The Vinelander
Have you been on the train yet @The Vinelander?
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Hi, no I arrived by car after having driven from Ballan via Cunnamulla to Thargomindah which is about about 250 Km away from Quilpie.

I'm leaving my car here for a few days and flying home from Quilpie to Melbourne for the weekend and will return from Melbourne to Brisbane on Tuesday and catch Tuesday nights Westlander to Charleville then to Quilpie.

I will write another Westlander report on Wednesday morning in transit by the Westlander to Charleville.

Mike.
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
Cunnamulla...how sad that is now with a sole, isolated refrigerator car in the goods yard and the station itself slowly falling into disrepair. I'm cautiously optimistic that of the three remaining covered stations on the QR network, Cunnamulla station with the increasing tourism out west may eventually be taken over and restored into a rail museum by a cashed up person or outside group and supported by government grants. Fortunately the sleepers are all steel and won't be deteriorating.
The Vinelander
They tell me the fridge van is for storing cold goods that come in by road for collection. Cunnamulla is a dying town, the locals are gradually leaving, drugs are a major problem. Not sure what will become of the station. How different from Thargomindah which seems to be a thriving little town!
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Cunnamulla...how sad that is now with a sole, isolated refrigerator car in the goods yard and the station itself slowly falling into disrepair. I'm cautiously optimistic that of the three remaining covered stations on the QR network, Cunnamulla station with the increasing tourism out west may eventually be taken over and restored into a rail museum by a cashed up person or outside group and supported by government grants. Fortunately the sleepers are all steel and won't be deteriorating.
They tell me the fridge van is for storing cold goods that come in by road for collection. Cunnamulla is a dying town, the locals are gradually leaving, drugs are a major problem. Not sure what will become of the station. How different from Thargomindah which seems to be a thriving little town!
Graham4405

I've found that out West it's all about the local Council and that is the generator of the appearance of the town and therefore public 'face'.
At present Cunnamulla presents itself better than it did around 5 years ago and there is a sense of community pride about the place. However it's far from out of the woods but some of the local attractions like the Cunnamulla Fella and the Gidgee Bean  which looks like a community cafe and drop in centre and various community events that occur all help to make the place liveable.

Drugs are a scourge and unfortunately if people feel there's no hope or reason to live, then I haven't got time for them...though there's a whole Government supported industry out there waiting to support them.

Thargo, with its fantastic new Bulloo Shire office and Coffee on Dowling which makes a half decent brew and is licenced on Saturday nights is the new Tourism Info centre and with plans to implement Hydro power for the town soon hopes the environmental friendliness of that free energy will be a drawcard.

If only in all three towns I've mentioned, people would walk a few blocks instead of driving everywhere then the obviously increasing obesity issues could be addressed. Some people are so FAT in these towns...and not a bicycle to be seen.

Fortunately I have a long distance commute whilst in Quilpie...a 6 block walk and the exercise I get from constantly swatting the swarms of flies even gives my arms a workout...Very Happy


Mike.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE


Drugs are a scourge and unfortunately if people feel there's no hope or reason to live, then I haven't got time for them...though there's a whole Government supported industry out there waiting to support them.

Mike.
The Vinelander
My Grandmother-inlaw lives in Batlow NSW, nice quiet part in the south Mountains. 2016 on a visit they told us ICE was a major issue in town with the young and now Cunnamulla?

One of the reasons that attracts us to stay in Dubai is its very low issue with drugs, however given the financial resources, by choice I want to move back to an Australian regional area within half a days drive of a city, likely somewhere hilly, rain (live in Dubai long enough and your appreciation for rain takes on a whole new world) with nice views and what I hoped was safe for my kids to grow up and enjoy nature and what the country has to offer and what I expected a much lower risk to drugs! However it doesn't seem to be the case.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Drugs are a scourge and unfortunately if people feel there's no hope or reason to live, then I haven't got time for them...though there's a whole Government supported industry out there waiting to support them.

Mike.
My Grandmother-inlaw lives in Batlow NSW, nice quiet part in the south Mountains. 2016 on a visit they told us ICE was a major issue in town with the young and now Cunnamulla?

One of the reasons that attracts us to stay in Dubai is its very low issue with drugs, however given the financial resources, by choice I want to move back to an Australian regional area within half a days drive of a city, likely somewhere hilly, rain (live in Dubai long enough and your appreciation for rain takes on a whole new world) with nice views and what I hoped was safe for my kids to grow up and enjoy nature and what the country has to offer and what I expected a much lower risk to drugs! However it doesn't seem to be the case.
RTT_Rules
Depends on your area RTT, drugs seem to be everywhere in Australia, but in my travels around I don't seem to notice them that much.  I do know they're an issue in some places, and some are worse than others, but its not like you see drug dens and wasted kids on every street in town.

Id look for the other positives that the country gives and whilst id take note of the drugs, the positives will outweigh them!

BTW, Albury is a town that might tick your boxes.
  nswtrains Chief Commissioner

Drugs are a scourge and unfortunately if people feel there's no hope or reason to live, then I haven't got time for them...though there's a whole Government supported industry out there waiting to support them.

Mike.
My Grandmother-inlaw lives in Batlow NSW, nice quiet part in the south Mountains. 2016 on a visit they told us ICE was a major issue in town with the young and now Cunnamulla?

One of the reasons that attracts us to stay in Dubai is its very low issue with drugs, however given the financial resources, by choice I want to move back to an Australian regional area within half a days drive of a city, likely somewhere hilly, rain (live in Dubai long enough and your appreciation for rain takes on a whole new world) with nice views and what I hoped was safe for my kids to grow up and enjoy nature and what the country has to offer and what I expected a much lower risk to drugs! However it doesn't seem to be the case.
Depends on your area RTT, drugs seem to be everywhere in Australia, but in my travels around I don't seem to notice them that much.  I do know they're an issue in some places, and some are worse than others, but its not like you see drug dens and wasted kids on every street in town.

Id look for the other positives that the country gives and whilst id take note of the drugs, the positives will outweigh them!

BTW, Albury is a town that might tick your boxes.
james.au
Sorry, some of the regional NSW towns are just swimming in ice. If you have any reason to come in contact with locals of the right genre then you realise how much of the horrible stuff is around. Albury/Wodonga would have to be one of the worse for drugs. After dark you see the numbers of crazy kids and older high on ice. Living away from the towns is a much better proposition as you are not so likely to come across the local crazies.
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
At present Cunnamulla presents itself better than it did around 5 years ago
The Vinelander
I have to agree with that, but the locals are still deserting the place in droves...
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
At present Cunnamulla presents itself better than it did around 5 years ago
I have to agree with that, but the locals are still deserting the place in droves...
Graham4405

There were never 'droves' of people in Cunnamulla.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cunnamulla

With 1400 or so perhaps the town is in a bit of a slump.

Sadly we have natural disasters, earthquakes, influenza epidemics from time to time and lots of people may die as a result of these. I consider those addicted to hard drugs in the same vein.

Mike.
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
With 1400 or so perhaps the town is in a bit of a slump.
The Vinelander

1140 last census (2016). I have been told that many have left since.

Cunnamulla's census populations have been:

Census Population
1871       45
1891     658
1911   1373
1954   1955
1976   1897
1991   1683
2001   1357
2006   1217
2011   1641
2016   1140
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
With 1400 or so perhaps the town is in a bit of a slump.

1140 last census (2016). I have been told that many have left since.

Cunnamulla's census populations have been:

Census Population

2006   1217
2011   1641
Graham4405

Thanks for posting the Bureau of Stats figures Graham...

I consider myself to be an optimist and look to the 400+ increase between 2006 and 2011. Going forward there's every chance the same will occur again.

Mike.
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
I want to move back to an Australian regional area within half a days drive of a city, likely somewhere hilly, rain (live in Dubai long enough and your appreciation for rain takes on a whole new world) with nice views and what I hoped was safe for my kids to grow up and enjoy nature and what the country has to offer and what I expected a much lower risk to drugs!
RTT_Rules

RTT, I think you miss spelt, train journey. Laughing

Don't suppose the Malmsbury Station, would be of interest ? A couple of big steps, across the platform, doors open on the V'lo and sit next to BG, for cruise back to Melbourne.

Not sure how anyone can escape the drug scene, these day's, apart from teaching ya kids manners and some respect for their elders, say please and thank you, open the door for someone and hope at the end of the day, they make good choices.

BigShunter,
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
I want to move back to an Australian regional area within half a days drive of a city, likely somewhere hilly, rain (live in Dubai long enough and your appreciation for rain takes on a whole new world) with nice views and what I hoped was safe for my kids to grow up and enjoy nature and what the country has to offer and what I expected a much lower risk to drugs!

RTT, I think you miss spelt, train journey. Laughing

Don't suppose the Malmsbury Station, would be of interest ? A couple of big steps, across the platform, doors open on the V'lo and sit next to BG, for cruise back to Melbourne.

Not sure how anyone can escape the drug scene, these day's, apart from teaching ya kids manners and some respect for their elders, say please and thank you, open the door for someone and hope at the end of the day, they make good choices.

BigShunter,
BigShunter

Shane...don't overlook Malmsbury...not necessarily the station, but the village itself, now the Calder has bypassed it is a very pleasant place to be.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malmsbury,_Victoria

Mike.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
With 1400 or so perhaps the town is in a bit of a slump.

1140 last census (2016). I have been told that many have left since.

Cunnamulla's census populations have been:

Census Population
1871       45
1891     658
1911   1373
1954   1955
1976   1897
1991   1683
2001   1357
2006   1217
2011   1641
2016   1140
Graham4405
The 400 rise in 2011 would seem odd.

Apart from then its fairly flat since 90's but yes many smaller very remote towns would be decling as dying people are not replaced and smaller families.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
I want to move back to an Australian regional area within half a days drive of a city, likely somewhere hilly, rain (live in Dubai long enough and your appreciation for rain takes on a whole new world) with nice views and what I hoped was safe for my kids to grow up and enjoy nature and what the country has to offer and what I expected a much lower risk to drugs!

RTT, I think you miss spelt, train journey. Laughing

Don't suppose the Malmsbury Station, would be of interest ? A couple of big steps, across the platform, doors open on the V'lo and sit next to BG, for cruise back to Melbourne.

Not sure how anyone can escape the drug scene, these day's, apart from teaching ya kids manners and some respect for their elders, say please and thank you, open the door for someone and hope at the end of the day, they make good choices.

BigShunter,

Shane...don't overlook Malmsbury...not necessarily the station, but the village itself, now the Calder has bypassed it is a very pleasant place to be.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malmsbury,_Victoria

Mike.
The Vinelander
Thanks guys

Agree, most the  issue for drugs starts with parents, but not all and yes we cannot bubble wrap. Just a bit shocked that some of these very small towns have such a problem, I know not all and some places worse than others.

Yes, bush block, acerage was something we were looking at. To be honest Running Creek area of Qld, or across into Northern Rivers in general of NSW (both near interstate for train watching). We have an acreage at Anges Waters also, but also the southern highlands of NSW.

Last year I found a hotel for sale on edge of skiing area in national park, near Mt Hotham. It was only open 7mths of year during winter and seemed to do quite well according to the listed data (yes need to do due diligence).  I'd also be open to Tassie again. Yes few of these places lack the essential parallel steel transport option.

Driving through from Bengio to Ballarat in 2016 for first time. There was an area about 30min from Ballarat, seems to be hilly and followed a disused railway, Castlemaine. Not sure wife is up to a Victorian winter though unless the location was something every day looking out the window you went WOW!
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
The 400 rise in 2011 would seem odd.
RTT_Rules

I thought that too. Just posted what I found online.
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
Just a bit shocked that some of these very small towns have such a problem.
RTT_Rules

The smaller towns seem to be the worst, at least on a per capita basis. Lack of work in these areas is a major contributing factor. Not all drug dealers/abusers are young people either!
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Sorry, some of the regional NSW towns are just swimming in ice. If you have any reason to come in contact with locals of the right genre then you realise how much of the horrible stuff is around. Albury/Wodonga would have to be one of the worse for drugs. After dark you see the numbers of crazy kids and older high on ice. Living away from the towns is a much better proposition as you are not so likely to come across the local crazies.
nswtrains

I think there are far worse for drugs than Albury/Wodonga.  Shepparton, Griffith/Leeton spring to mind.

Without data though we are all just telling our own anecdotes...
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
I want to move back to an Australian regional area within half a days drive of a city, likely somewhere hilly, rain (live in Dubai long enough and your appreciation for rain takes on a whole new world) with nice views and what I hoped was safe for my kids to grow up and enjoy nature and what the country has to offer and what I expected a much lower risk to drugs!

RTT, I think you miss spelt, train journey. Laughing

Don't suppose the Malmsbury Station, would be of interest ? A couple of big steps, across the platform, doors open on the V'lo and sit next to BG, for cruise back to Melbourne.

Not sure how anyone can escape the drug scene, these day's, apart from teaching ya kids manners and some respect for their elders, say please and thank you, open the door for someone and hope at the end of the day, they make good choices.

BigShunter,

Shane...don't overlook Malmsbury...not necessarily the station, but the village itself, now the Calder has bypassed it is a very pleasant place to be.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malmsbury,_Victoria

Mike.
Thanks guys

Agree, most the  issue for drugs starts with parents, but not all and yes we cannot bubble wrap. Just a bit shocked that some of these very small towns have such a problem, I know not all and some places worse than others.

Yes, bush block, acerage was something we were looking at. To be honest Running Creek area of Qld, or across into Northern Rivers in general of NSW (both near interstate for train watching). We have an acreage at Anges Waters also, but also the southern highlands of NSW.

Last year I found a hotel for sale on edge of skiing area in national park, near Mt Hotham. It was only open 7mths of year during winter and seemed to do quite well according to the listed data (yes need to do due diligence).  I'd also be open to Tassie again. Yes few of these places lack the essential parallel steel transport option.

Driving through from Bengio to Ballarat in 2016 for first time. There was an area about 30min from Ballarat, seems to be hilly and followed a disused railway, Castlemaine. Not sure wife is up to a Victorian winter though unless the location was something every day looking out the window you went WOW!
RTT_Rules

Yes, you are talking about the Daylesford and the Mt Franklin area...of the mineral water fame.

Daylesford has particularly cold winters due to being at 700Metres, but if you can stand that, lovely Autumns and Springs and milder Summers than Melbourne. BTW it's Bendigo.

If you managed a Hobart/Tassie winter, virtually all of Victoria's central highlands should be in your scope should you decide that.

Mike.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE

Yes, you are talking about the Daylesford and the Mt Franklin area...of the mineral water fame.

Daylesford has particularly cold winters due to being at 700Metres, but if you can stand that, lovely Autumns and Springs and milder Summers than Melbourne. BTW it's Bendigo.

If you managed a Hobart/Tassie winter, virtually all of Victoria's central highlands should be in your scope should you decide that.

Mike.
The Vinelander
Hi Mike
Thanks

I said I lived in Tassie, 8 years, Launceston and Queenstown. The one with the long hair was not part of my life then, while born 12:02am 1/1/76 in Canberra (1st for the year), she moved to Qld very young and has acclimatised so much visiting my parents in Dec in Sydney the first yea she was wearing a leather jacket at night. 90% of us must bow to the whims of the long hair brigade or be reminded every day of our clearly incorrect decision. However 8 years in Dubai we have gone the other way and embrace cold weather now, so who knows. I also enjoy a swim at the beach and in Tassie I didn't really enjoy unless encased in a wet-suit, but due to my sin I cannot soak up the rays for too long so in and out and off.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
I just had a call from Queensland Rail Travel and the bad news regards the departure of the Westlander from Roma Street next Tuesday evening.

Unsurprisingly the tunnel lowering project is running late and The Westlander, bus replacement will depart Roma Street at 20:00 and connect with the train and depart Toowoomba at its usual time of 23:25.

So no alcoholic beverages will be available on board to numb myself into a state alcohol induced stupor...unless I sneak something on-board the bus.

I wonder how many pax I'll be sharing the bus with...Confused

Mike.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
How much time do you save by taking the bus?

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