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The Official Opening of the Gheringhap – Cressy – Maroona Railway took place at Lismore on 8th August 1913. It was an important development for Geelong, the western plains, grain growers in the Wimmera and the Victorian Railways.
The railway had been constructed over a three year period. Goods and passengers were carried on sections of the railway as they were constructed, but it was in August 1913 that construction was completed and the full line available for public services.
The centenary of the Opening will be celebrated in August 2013. This Society initiated celebrations in June 2007 to mark the 150th anniversary of the railway between Geelong and Melbourne and in April 2012 for the Geelong & Ballarat Railway 150th. Community organisations, individuals, local and state government and rail businesses are encouraged to participate in displays and events to celebrate the occasions.
Saturday 10 August 2013
Historic displays relating to the construction and life of the railway and the local community will be held at: Inverleigh Public Hall, Cressy History Centre and Public Hall, Derrinallum History Centre and Mount Elephant reserve, Westmere Public Hall and the Ararat Railway Heritage Centre.
Tours of the railway between Gheringhap and Maroona – A tour by rail from Geelong (North Shore) to Ararat on the Overland train, returning by road coach, visiting significant sites en route and local displays, will be operated by the Geelong & South Western Rail Heritage Society Inc. A road coach tour following the line westbound will be operated by the Australian Railway Historical Society (Victorian Division), both on Saturday 10 August.
Centenary history booklet – A booklet with a brief history and photographs of the line throughout its 100 year history will be published.
Anyone with memories of growing up near the railway, travelling on it, using it for freight transport or working on it are invited to contact the organiser so that their memories and any memorabilia of the railway may be recorded.
Event details and tracking at: http://www.railpage.com.au/calendar/event/1068/
This article first appeared on www.cressyrail100.org.au
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