Schematic Service Map of NSW Rural Passenger Rail Network at Maximum Extent

 
  voom Station Master

Edit: I've now finished a draft version of the map and it is available here. Clicking the image on the page will take you to a high-resolution zoomable version of the map.

Hi everyone,

I've been embarking on an ambitious plan to try and create a map of the entire NSW rural passenger rail network at its maximum extent in a schematic service map style (like the CityRail map). Here's a link to what I've done so far. And here's a link to a sample close-up.

Greyed stations and lines represent those that have closed to passenger traffic. Each line represents a service, not necessarily a track or track pair - basically, like the CityRail network map.

What I'm having trouble with is how to draw how the branch lines' joins to the main lines. Without the timetables, I can't really ascertain which branch lines just ran as a shuttle to the nearest main line station, which ones ran to the nearest major town on the main line and which ones ran all the way to Sydney.

If anyone can fill me in on the destination(s) for each of the following branch lines (or let me know if they never had passenger service), I would greatly appreciate it.

Once the map is done, I'll release it in zoomable high resolution.

Thanks =).

Northern Region:
Ballina Branch, Barraba Branch, Binnaway - Werris Creek Line, Boggabilla Branch, Casino - Bonalbo Line, Dorrigo Branch, Inverell Branch, Merriwa Branch, Mungindi Line, Murwillumbah Branch, Pokataroo Branch, Sandy Hollow - Gulgong Line, Walgett Branch

Southern Region:
Berrima Branch, Blayney - Demondrille Line, Bombala Line, Boorowa Branch, Box Vale Colliery Branch, Burcher Branch, Captains Flat Branch, Corowa Branch, Crookwell Branch, Eugowra Branch, Goondah - Burrinjuck Line, Grenfell Branch, Hay Branch, Holbrook Branch, Kunama Branch, Kywong Branch, Lake Cargelligo Branch, Medway Quarry Branch, Mittagong - Joadja Line, Naradhan Branch, Oaklands Branch, Rand Branch, Rankins Springs Branch, Stockinbingal - Parkes Line, Taralga Branch, Temora - Roto Line, Tocumwal Branch, Tumbarumba Branch, Tumut Branch, Unanderra - Moss Vale Line, Westby Branch, Yanco - Griffith Line, Yass Branch

Western Region:
Brewarrina Branch, Cadia Mine Branch, Cobar Branch, Coolah Branch, Coonamble Branch, Gwabegar Line, Molong - Dubbo Line, Mount Hope Branch, Newnes Line, Oberon Branch, Parkes - Narromine Line, Tarrawingee Line, The Peak Branch, Tottenham Branch, Troy Junction - Merrygoen Line, Wallerawang Colliery Branch, Warren Branch

Interstate Lines:
Balranald Line, Deniliquin Line, Oaklands Branch, Robinvale - Lette Line, Stony Crossing Line, Tocumwal Branch

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  wally-wowser1 Train Controller

Location: overlooking the Mt vic washaway on Soldiers Pinch
Suggest you have a look at  the section of this forum covering Archaeology , It is down towards the bottom of the first page . Hairylegs has done a magnificent job of placing all OZZY  tracks onto Google earth   . Yes it is a factual diagram & not schematic but I think most on here want  fact rather than straight lines to see  where they are chasing things.

Cheers   Wally
  petan Chief Commissioner

Location: Waiting to see a zebra using a zebra crossing!
Much of what you want will be found in the line histories in the ARHS Bulletin now called Australian Railway History. The first issue was 1937 and still being published monthly by the ARHS. Back copies available (DVD to 2009) from the following links http://www.railwaybookshop.com.au//shopdisplayproducts.asp?id=25&cat=ARHS%2Fnsw+Archives+Research+Series+DVDs

http://www.arhsnsw.com.au/arh.htm

Index http://www.nswrail.net/search/bulletin.php
  NSWRcars Assistant Commissioner

voom

It is difficult to see any use for this map, other than for your own self-education.

You face some dilemmas.

Do you show all lines from all eras, or only those served when the system was at its maximum extent? Some newer lines and several closed branch lines never co-existed.

What constitutes a direct service to Sydney? Which way do you show the connections at Dubbo (for Coonamble), Cootamundra (for Temora), and Junee (for Narrandera)? All depends on the era and service you wish to represent.
  petan Chief Commissioner

Location: Waiting to see a zebra using a zebra crossing!
NSWGR General Passenger Traffic Workings MSTS Modelling Guidelines – Version 2.0 November 2007 with thanks to Brian Bere-Streeter and http://shortnorth.steam4me.net/General.html

http://shortnorth.steam4me.net/files/NSWGR%20General%20Passenger%20Traffic%20Workings.pdf

Also the documents portion http://www.coalstonewcastle.com.au/appendix/documents/
  voom Station Master

Thanks to everyone for their replies. Since the replies generally seem to indicate that the community is not interested in the map, I might not continue developing it. Thanks in particular to Petan and Wally for the links - they will be interesting reading. Buying the bulletins would be out of my budget, unfortunately.
  Newcastle Express Chief Commissioner

Who said we aren't interested?

BUT on the other hand, and while they need to be "refined" what about these Railpage Australia maps that are almost the same thing? (http://www.railmaps.com.au)

Although they don't have all the rail lines at maximum extent.

For maximum extent, wouldn't it be maximum before the maps were made? For example, for today, you would include the South West Rail Line.
  voom Station Master

I thought that the forum members weren't interested because the other posts said things like they can see no use for the map, that they'd rather the geographic map than a schematic map, etc.

As for the maps on railmaps.com.au, the difference between that and the map that I'm making is that my map shows every single passengewr station and line there ever was, whereas the maps on railmaps.com.au show only the current network, which is much smaller.
  mikesyd Chief Commissioner

Location: Lurking
Don't let one or two comments turn you off your Project. If you believe in it, go for it.
  scoot Junior Train Controller

Location: Safety Bay, Western Australia
Keep going buddy. I love it.
  Newcastle Express Chief Commissioner

Each line represents a service, not necessarily a track or track pair - basically, like the CityRail network map.
voom
If that's the case, then the Ballina Branch should really start at Lismore.

What I'm having trouble with is how to draw how the branch lines' joins to the main lines.
voom
Study that Australia Rail map service for joins may came in handy

Without the timetables, I can't really ascertain which branch lines just ran as a shuttle to the nearest main line station
voom
Newcastle Library has train timetables of various years dating back to 1906 (although they've lost that one!), and believe they have one when the Ballina Line had a train service.

The Mitchell Library in Sydney is bound to have some train timetables of when train services ran.

Voom, if you go to this Coals to Newcastle document page, it has public timetables, and one of those timetables show up as 1929 Country;

But as for Working Timtables on that site, I can't find any timetable for that the time of the Ballina Line, but has other years for other branches.

But the whatever-it-is-called (oh I know State Records) Centre at Penrith (or is that St. Mary's?) would have some WTT & public train timetables from various years. But you would need to catch a bus from the station.

(Edit: Also look on some photo hosting sites for various train timetables.

Most of those branch lines you listed, would have either have had services from either the junction station, or nearest town.

Edit: Now I was going to edit something, but forgot what. Now what was it?

And another question for Voom is how are you going to show train services that divide? And some like the Murwillumbah Line had at times only say a few carriages from a North Coast train to Brisbane (actually South Brisbane back then)
  petan Chief Commissioner

Location: Waiting to see a zebra using a zebra crossing!
NSWGR General Passenger Traffic Workings MSTS Modelling Guidelines – Version 2.0 November 2007 with thanks to Brian Bere-Streeter and http://shortnorth.steam4me.net/General.html
http://shortnorth.steam4me.net/files/NSWGR%20General%20Passenger%20Traffic%20Workings.pdf
Also the documents portion http://www.coalstonewcastle.com.au/appendix/documents/
petan
As you know that Coals to Newcastle link I supplied earlier has old timetables and I have extracts of some other TT from my own sources online for the top end of the North Coast line so I did a comparison of the 1955 WTT against the 1969 public timetable. Most of the 1955 stations are on the 1969 TT.  

The problem will be the small ones eg Finn's Platform (535m 40 ch) on the 1955 WTT between Mt Lion and Treberth not shown on the 1969 TT. A check of the Historical Notes on the Northern Branch Lines - 1975 - Part 2 from that Coals to Newcastle website shows it to be near Gradys Creek Rd level crossing and that creeks No3 crossing. Finns is marked on the 1960s Casino Sth Brisbane track diagram I have online. If you are going to do that sort of detailed cross checking for all these stations than you are in for a long job but it will be very enjoyable Smile

1955 WTT Casino Sth Bne https://docs.google.com/file/d/0ByB-ppGeDyvwdXpudmgxZ0xsekk/edit  

1960s Casino Sth Brisbane track https://docs.google.com/file/d/0ByB-ppGeDyvwVWI4blAxNk5HSmM/edit

1969 passenger TT Sth Bne Sydney https://docs.google.com/file/d/0ByB-ppGeDyvwdFA3czZnWWY3SXc/edit
  catchpoint Assistant Commissioner

Location: At the end of a loop
Could not hurt to have a look at this blog / website for ideas and history

http://transitmaps.tumblr.com/

http://www.cambooth.net/archives/2664

There is also an excellent tutorial for budding map makers

http://www.cambooth.net/archives/2031

Hope this is of interest.

Regards,

Catchpoint
  gordon_s1942 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Tablelands of NSW
You can delete any reference to the Wallerawang Colliery Branch as it NEVER provided any passenger service except for being used by the Historical Society.
The Colliery Branch line before the Coal Loader was built on the never built shunting yard was partly owned by the NSWGR to Bray's lane then on private property to Western Main that is now buried under Mt Piper Power station.

The Oberon line has a well documented history of hauling both Goods and Passengers until it was closed.
  Newcastle Express Chief Commissioner

Another thing that Voom has to decide is whether or not to include those locations that were not stations, and were shown in WTT's such as XYZ mi, XYZ ch (miles, chains) to let off say school children, and a few of those spots state "school children &/or employees and their families.
The trains were due to stop at those points if stated, but their was no physical platform, so does he count them or not?

And also would he for making the maps clearer, have say Metford Station, with in brackets, also the site or near of Enfield Rifleman's Platform, or would he "plonk" it near the current Metford Station?

Oh Voom, a handy book which includes station openings, closings if known, and if the name was changed, and if it had a construction name. is dated 1980, and I forget what it is called, but search the library sites. It's at various libraries.
Don't see why station needed a different construction name, instead of the name that was to be used on the station.
  BrianBS Locomotive Driver

Voom, another thing you need to take into account - many rural lines were not served by dedicated passenger trains, only a mixed train with a passenger coach attached at the back beside the goods brake van. Then the more lightly served rural lines, didn't even have a passenger coach, they just relied on having one (or in some cases, two) second class passenger compartment(s) built into the goods brake van.

Regards, Brian
  voom Station Master

Thanks for the additional replies and information.

I've been focusing on just adding in all the lines and stations at this point and will tackle the details later on.

Here's a higher resolution sample of how far I've gotten up to:
http://www.terramondemapping.com/nswrailmap/nswmapdraft2.png

So as not to make it overly complex, not all loops/realignments are shown.

As for which stations/stops/halts I show or not, I'm basically just following what's listed on NSWrail.net.

As for whether the branch lines were served by dedicated passenger trains, that shouldn't really make a difference to the appearance of the map.
  a6et Minister for Railways

Voom, another thing you need to take into account - many rural lines were not served by dedicated passenger trains, only a mixed train with a passenger coach attached at the back beside the goods brake van. Then the more lightly served rural lines, didn't even have a passenger coach, they just relied on having one (or in some cases, two) second class passenger compartment(s) built into the goods brake van.

Regards, Brian
BrianBS
The overall reality of doing something like this, in the end every line that basically existed in NSW, at one point of time had some form of passenger service. Many stations which were often listed in the Time tables were very basic at best. I remember in mid 1964, doing some background work on photographing along the Main North, seeing the timetable & how it sat near the main road, made me think that I could get off at the next station past Nemingh -Titinhull it was listed as a station & the mail was tabled as a stop, but I was told in no uncertain terms at Tamworth, as I had to notify the conductor at that point, that the station at Titinhull was gone, & I could get off at Nemingha or go through to Kootingal nothing in between.

At that period of time, the state may not have been at its high point with trains running that had passenger services to every spot, but it was pretty close.  By that time though some stations & a couple of branch lines had closed, therefore cutting back on the amount of passenger services.

Mixed trains were classed as passenger trains, same as other cross country services, eg, a Monday & Friday service that ran from Cootamundrat to Parkes, was a goods train advertised with Passenger accomodation.  The wonder of it was that when passengers did arrive & want to travel on it, the train was often delayed when the van had to be cleaned out.

Reality being as it, such an undertaking as being done here, really only needs to show the system at its high point regarding all lines that were open.

One last thing is that there were many locations along lines that were food stops for homesteads, they had small platforms, around 6 foot long, a large bin for the homestead food to be delivered to, especially bread.  These stations were also used as means for families to go shopping, notice had to be made to the main station in the area to arrange for brake vans suitable for such travel, a bit better than a horse & sulky that still existed in the 60's for some.
  voom Station Master

Hi everyone,

I've now finished a draft version of the map and it is available here. Clicking the image on the page will take you to a high-resolution zoomable version of the map.
  a6et Minister for Railways

On the North, Uralla is a station currently served by train.

On the Broken Hill line, Darnick and Menindee are also current stops.

On the South, North Menangle and Bong Bong are long gone, Menangle should be there.

It could be argued that Junee is shown the wrong side of the triangle (passenger trains to Griffith reverse here), but this gets back to what the map is actually attempting to show.

Why show a deviation at Morrisons Hill (which is on the current main line) when many similar deviations are omitted (eg Glenbrook, Wambool)?
NSWRcars
I am not sure if I have missed it or not, but the other aspect I have found is that there does not appear to be any real clear menu that describes how to read the map, especially as it relates to the secondary lines.

While drawing the various main lines in their respective older known colours, there really is nothing to show the other lines were passenger served lines, in other words it seems to me its all but a new version of one of the old NSWGR state wide line maps that were common in the 60's & earlier.
  voom Station Master

Thanks for the comments, a6et and NSWRcars.

I've fixed the issues that you've identified in the map, NSWRcars, and have updated the map accordingly. However, I have issues forcing the image tiles in my Internet browser to refresh after I change the map, so they might not appear even when you reload the page. It might be necessary to clear your cache, unfortunately.

A6et, I have added a key to the map. Due to the aforementioned issues with seeing changes to the map, here is a link to the key by itself:
http://voommaps.com/maps/nsw_rural_rail_network/nsw-rrn-key.png

I don't really have enough timetable detail available to me to show each branch line as you've indicated, so yes, the map is really just grouped into the three regions of the state.
  Newcastle Express Chief Commissioner

You forget Civic Station & for the branch lines you need to show would be,the Minmi, Belmont Branches. And I think the Newnes Branch was called the Wolgan Valley Branch"
And you haven't named Tamworth and Armidale.

And the Morpeth Branch branched off at East Maitland, not Maitland, first from Maitland at East Maitland, and then from Newcastle at East Maitland.
  Peter Station Staff

Voom: terrific work!  Thank you.  Visual presentation is often the best way of communicating and for describing passenger service material a map is essential.  A great strength of articles in Railway Digest is that they include maps of the subject area; ditto with articles in The Railway Magazine.  I look forward to further refinements.
  Piston Train Controller

Hi Voom,
Had a quick look at your map and found a few typos and other issues you might like to consider:
SOUTH
Corowa Branch
Burreumbuttock - should be spelt Burrumbuttock

Kunama Branch
Wubalena / Wybalena
Junction for Kunama line is Gilmore

Tocumwal Branch
Curraghmohr is between Leniston and Finley

Yanco - Griffith
Paynters is between between Narrandera and Roach
Wumbilgal / Wumbulgal

Griffith - Roto
LanDurrungtree?
Berrigan - wrong line.

WEST
Mullengudgery / Mullangudgery

Coonamble Branch
Marthaguy - missing between Balladoran and Gilgandra

ILLAWARRA LINE
Croom was a platform between Oak Flats and Shellharbour

NORTH COAST
Mindarubba / Mindaribba
Berico / Berrico
Pitlorchy / Pitlochry
Langley Vale between Lansdowne and Coopernook
Tamban between Colombatti and Eungai
Wirrimba / Wirrimbi
Park Beach between Coffs Harbour and Coffs Harbour North
Baraimol / Baraimal
Yongurrea / Yongurra
Loadstone between Trebereth and Cougal

MURWILLUMBAH BRANCH
Bentley is before Bungabee

MAITLAND - WERRIS CREEK
Rutherford Racecourse branch comes off main line at Rutherford Junction
Antiene between Liddell and Grasstree
Koolbury is a loop only with a platform for employees only.
Murrulla is a loop only
Temple Court - no platform?
Black Ridge existed only as a tablet station from 19.9.1894 to 10.12 1894

MAIN NORTH
Gresley was a crossing loop only Opened in 1942, closed 1944 and removed in 1948
Bluff Rock between Sandy Flat and Bungulla

BARRABA LINE
Kilori /Klori

WALGETT LINE
This line branches off at Narrabri Junction not Narrabri

Thats all, other than that a good job
  voom Station Master

Thanks for the replies, corrections and compliments, Newcastle Express, Peter and Piston.

@Newcastle Express: Civic station is on there already though. So is the Belmont Branch. I've added the Minmi Branch, however, and have renamed the Newnes Line and fixed the junction for the Morpeth branch. As for Tamworth and Armidale, I'm following NSWRail.net's line/branch naming convention and they don't have a Tamworth Line or Armidale Line listed, so that's why I don't have them labelled as such.

@Piston: Thanks for the very comprehensive review/proofreading - I have fixed the mistakes you've pointed out. The only question I have is about Temple Court. Do you mean that I'm missing "Platform" from the name? Or are you saying it shouldn't be there because there was no platform at that location?

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