News: Celebrating our railway heritage
The Valley Heights Locomotive Depot Museum is set to receive nearly $20,000 to help create a permanent exhibition of its intriguing history in its visitors’ centre.
Andrew Tester, Convenor of the Museum’s Centenary Organising Committee, said the money will be used to develop a permanent visitor model which will tell the story of the locomotive depot during its peak period of operation in the 1950s.
A working model of the depot will be enhanced by signs and photographs to illustrate and help tell the story.
“Many visitors to this Mountains landmark are unfamiliar with the purpose, role and historical significance the locomotive depot played in the transport of both freight and passengers across the Blue Mountains,” said Mr Tester.
“This way, visitors will enter the exhibition to learn about the locomotive depot and its role before walking out into the museum and seeing the real thing,” he said.
Labor spokesperson for Macquarie Susan Templeman congratulated the organisers on their grant.
“This and the other projects in the community heritage funding will allow the stories of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people who crossed the Blue Mountains to be told,” she said.
“And the stories that the Valley Heights museum can tell are important.
“For European settlers, transport across the Mountains was key, and hearing some of the tales of the building and operation of the railway line tells me this will be an information centre with fascinating information.
“Our past is fundamental to our national identity and helps us understand where we have come from and who we are,” she said. The locomotive depot has further plans to celebrate its history, with the centenary of the locomotive depot occurring in January 2014.
Museum members together with members of the Blue Mountains and Nepean Christian Model Railway Fellowship and the Springwood Historical Society have joined forces to develop an exhibition which will provide additional historic information. The exhibition will be developed and be ready in time for celebrations being planned for the centenary.