Shunt work has heritage rail on track for revival
A NEW contract for shunt services to Maryborough is helping the Mary Valley Heritage Railway become viable again.
MVHR manager Jim Walker was pleased with the deal to use a diesel locomotive to shunt for Downer EDI from Gympie at Maryborough.
He said the contract followed detailed negotiation with a large number of players, together with thorough preparation of equipment.
"The MVHR has been looking to identify alternate revenue opportunities following the suspension of passenger operations last year. This operation is a major plus for us," Mr Walker said.
"I thank all who were involved in the planning and implementation of this event."
MVHR president Tony Hallam said the railway would continue to source alternative revenue opportunities while working with the State Government in the execution of the recently announced funding. The funding is being used to help return heritage steam operations back to the Mary Valley.
"This is a great outcome for the MVHR and demonstrates that the MVHR is continuing to develop and grow as a viable business entity," Mr Hallam said.
"This initiative continues to lay the foundation for the reboot of the Valley Rattler."
He said volunteer track gangs had just replaced 54 sleepers in the Gympie yard and to the immediate south of Old Gympie Railway Station.
The co-ordinator of the volunteer track gang, Peter Alder, said it was a big effort.
"We have been having track gangs every two to three weeks and it is great to see the number of volunteers who turn up.
"It is hard yakka," he said.
For details and bookings of the Heritage Rail Motor tours, which occur on the second and fourth Sundays and during the MVHR Twilight Markets every third Saturday, please phone 5482 2750.