Community takes fight for rail to the Supreme Court
Rail corridor between Glenfield and Macarthur earmarked for medium density
Rail Trail boost to tourism - and local economy
Newcastle rail case may be long wait
Save Our Rail questions semantics argument over rail line cut
North West Rail Link corridor to extend through to Marsden Park
Camurra West to Weemelah Line Booked Out of Use
Rail Trail full steam ahead
John Holland Commissions Electronic Train Orders
Closure of Newcastle rail stations not technically a closure of whole line, State Government lawyer says
It operated for 99 years before suddenly ending in March 1990. The picturesque spur line connecting Toronto with the main northern line at Fassifern operated using steam trains and later, at the end, small red diesel railcars.
In between, in 1898, a draught horse was once used to pull a 14-passenger trolley on weekdays to save costs.
Toronto had a tourism boom in the 1890s when the area was promoted as the “Riviera of Australia”. But times change, and more families buying cars cut into rail patronage. Then, in 1984, a steam train service right through to Newcastle was discontinued.
In its final days, Toronto station railway staff used to call it the ‘Yoyo’ line, because it only went up and down, up and down all day along a short but scenic bush route. The historic rail line finally ended 29 years ago on March 10, 1990, the anniversary of which is just around the corner.
A passenger bus service immediately replaced the rail route. The controversial closure drew howls of protest from Lake Macquarie residents, but the NSW government was unmoved, citing rising costs for axing the railway.
The omens for the survival of the popular rail shuttle had never been good. While electrification of the Sydney to Newcastle rail line came in June 1984, it was never extended to Toronto.
Rail closure was a case of history repeating. The 1990 closure was actually the second time the line had ceased. The rail link first closed in early 1909, before it was rescued by a government injection of cash.
One good outcome of the whole sorry rail saga, however, was the decision in 1978 to sell the former Toronto railway goods yard land to Lake Macquarie Council for $2500. Most of the lake railway terminus was then slowly transformed into a wonderfully scenic waterfront park at a cost (estimated in 1979) of $100,000.
Today, the heritage-listed old Toronto railway station, off Victory Parade just below the Toronto Hotel, is a heritage centre and home to the Lake Macquarie and District Historical Society (LM&DHS). Surprisingly, the old rail lines are still there, in situ, untouched, outside the lone, but well maintained, railway station building and platform.
This article first appeared on www.theherald.com.au
About this website
Railpage version 3.10.0.0037
All logos and trademarks in this site are property of their respective owner. The comments are property of their posters, all the rest is © 2003-2019 Interactive Omnimedia Pty Ltd.
You can syndicate our news using one of the RSS feeds.