Set beside the railway line in Drayton, the enthusiastic bunch of volunteer guides, machine minders and train fixers and Better than Bunnings Sausage cooks put on a wonderful Australia Day program of activities. Hasara Silva accompanied myself and Ben Moore to the site where we were entranced by the band playing catchy tunes and adapted pieces to represent the sounds of the steam trains.
Having a delicious morning tea from the menu in the old catering carriage was a relaxing way to capture the atmosphere of this older form of travel.
Hasara was very impressed with the amazing artwork by Aboriginal artist Dom from Doolamai Gallery in Russell Street. It took Dom 19 weeks to cover every inch if the inside of the Dreamtime carriage. It depicts the culturally significant images and messages of First Nations culture and is a genuine asset to Toowoomba and the region to understand the origins and workings of of the local tribal groups and their beliefs that guided their caretaking of the land and their survival for thousands of years. This is certainly a highlight for visitors of all ages.
Early colonial seats hewn from timber adorn the platform, and the shop provides information and memorabilia. Visitors meander through the many styles of carriages that are now stationary reminders of a more leisurely means of travel. The museum carriage transports us to a very different era. Attention to detail and a love of the preservation work have provided a great local attraction!
We saw the Steam train return from its short run to Wyreema and back and are very excited to think that in March we would be taking a trip Clifton if all the necessary safety requirements are lined up. What a great attraction for our international and local visitors alike to be able to experience.