Clickety clack 100 years on
ONE HUNDRED years of rail were celebrated in Kyogle yesterday with a re-enactment of the official opening of the branch line on January 26, 1910.
The re-enactment starred Lismore MP Thomas George playing the part of the Honourable Mr C A Lee, the then NSW Minister for Works.
Malcolm Wallis played the Kyogle Council president R E Alcorn. Mrs Lee was played by secretary of the Kyogle Historical Society, Elaine McLean. It was her role to cut the official ribbon.
The script was pieced together from reports that appeared in newspapers, including The Northern Star.
The citizens of Kyogle petitioned the Government for a branch line and a short time later the NSW Parliament announced that ‘a line to Kyogle was justified’.
Just one month later, in January 1909, the construction of the 30km-long branch line, costing £60,000, commenced and was completed in a record 12 months.
About 300 people gathered on the Kyogle Station platform to greet the Sydney bound XPT when it pulled in a few minutes late at about 9.30am. It was an acknowledgment of the ongoing presence of the railway in the town.
Kyogle councillor Robert Dwyer said rail had been an important part of Kyogle’s history and he hoped it would continue to be into the future.
“I would like to see less road transport. If we are to sustain our railways something has to be done,” Cr Dwyer said.