Dismantling the South Gippsland Railway

 
  reidgck Locomotive Fireman

Videos became deleted but are being gradually reposted

Last train over Tarwin River bridges at

Last Train over Tarwin River Bridges South Gippsland Railway 1994 by reidgck
Rail Removal Tarwin River bridges at

South Gippsland Railway Rail Removal Tarwin River Bridges 1994 by reidgck
Rails from Koonwarra

Rails from Koonwarra South Gippsland Railway 1994 by reidgck
The last train east of Leongatha is at

Last Train East of Leongatha South Gippsland Railway by reidgck
Last three rail recovery trains from Leongatha

Last Rail Recovery Trains Leongatha South Gippsland Railway by reidgck


Video 1
Rail recovery train from Boys Road Fish Creek on the closed SGR

Rail recovery train South Gippsland Railway Victoria Australia 1994. Rails recovered from the Fish Creek to boys Road section of the South Gippsland Railway, are loaded on the Melbourne side of Boys Road and the train is followed back along the closed line to Leongatha and to Korumburra. A recovery train ran once a week in 1994 to recover the higher quality rail between Foster and Leongatha.

The two locomotives on the train this particular week were P11 and T402. The last regular train on this line was the Barry beach oil train in June 1992. Although the railway had higher quality rail east of Barry Beach junction, Lighter rail existed between Barry beach junction and Foster, This lighter rail went as scap but the last Barry beach train brought back the last load of heavier rail pulled up from between Welshpool and Barry Beach junction.


Video 2
South Gippsland rail removal and Recovery trains Meeniyan area

Pulling up the South Gippsland Railway in the Stony Creek Meeniyan area and loading the rail onto recovery trains with views of the train from Meeniyan as far as Nyora. - Victorian Railways Australia July - August 1994.

Video 3
Last train over the Tarwin River Bridges

The last train to cross the Tarwin River bridges on the South Gippsland Railway Victoria Australia, was a rail recovery train run at the end of August 1994, more than two years after the line's closure which was June 1992.  The train was powered by diesel electric locomotives P19 and H1.

It was loaded with recovered rails from Meeniyan to the loading point which was three kilometres on the Melbourne side of Meeniyan. There was a locomotive at each end of the train between the loading point and leongatha due to the now lack of run around loops.

Two similar rail recovery trains later ran from Koonwarra. The last two loads of rail were from between Koonwarra and Leongatha. The last of these two trains from Koonwarra was the last train beyond Leongatha.

The final two loads of recovered rails were dragged  to Leongatha and were loaded from beside the platform there into the last two recovery trains. Neither of these trains passed passed Leongatha. It is intended to post more of the happenings during the pulling up of the South Gippsland Railway eventually, from the more than four hours of video taken, including the above mentioned; the methods, the dragging of rails across the first bridge, and the pulling the rails up on the second bridge and dragging them away.

The video caption shows the not powering H1 at the rear of the last train over the Tarwin River Bridges, about to be pulled across the third bridge; the bridge closest to Melbourne, by P19 which was at the front of the train. H1 was the leading locomotive on the forward journey to the loading point near Meeniyan from Leongatha, and it again became the leading locomotive from Leongatha to Melbourne.




Video 4
Dismantling the SGR between Meeniyan and Koonwarra

Video record of the pulling up of the the South Gippsland Railway Victoria Australia in 1994 between Meeniyan and Koonwarra. The video Includes showing the rails being dragged by the rail tractor being used, across two of the three long Tarwin River wooden trestle bridges on the way to the stockpiles at Koonwarra for the rail recovery trains to pick up.

Featured also, is the pulling up of, and the dragging of the rails from the middle Tarwin River trestle bridge by the rail tractor. Also included is the loading of a train in charge of  diesel electric locomotives T400 and T388, with recovered rail, and the train then leaving Koonwarra with flagmen stopping the road traffic with red flags as the level crossing lights had been removed after the closure of the railway. Following, are views of this train, later climbing the long hill into Leongatha.

This was the second last train to arrive at  Leongatha from the east. The final train was the following week carrying the last of the two loads of rails from Koonwarra which were taken up from the Meeniyan - Koonwarra section. The final two loads of rail from the six kilometre Koonwarra to Leongatha section after that, were loaded beside the Leongatha station platform after having been dragged from as far away as Koonwarra. During this task, the rail and road tractor shown in action in the video, and which was being used to drag the recovered rails to the loading points, became a victim of the hard work issued to it, and suffered a major mechanical breakdown.

Video 5
Last train east of Leongatha

The last train along the South Gippsland Railway east of Leongatha, along the remaining section of the railway that had been closed since mid 1992, was a rail recovery train to and from Koonwarra. The locomotives were P23 and P12 each at opposite ends of the train from Leongatha as there were no servicable loops or sidings remaining for locomotives to change ends at Koonwarra some six kilometres from Leongatha.

The train is videoed being loaded with recovered rail, departing Koonwarra, and between Koonwarra and Leongatha. Following are some scenes at Koonwarra two weeks later and some video of the Tarwin River which was in flood after heavy rains between that time and the time the rails were removed from the three Tarwin River wooden trestle bridges


Last Train east of Leongatha at Koonwarra By reidgck The scene is now quite different at Koonwarra. In a picture above, the highway is shown going up past the shop in the distance. When the railway closed, the highway was reconstructed and now follows the old railway formation for some distance  

Video 6
Last trains loaded at Leongatha

The last of the series of videos recording the pulling up of the South Gippsland Railway beyond Leongatha with three trains being loaded with rails that had been dragged from as far away as Koonwarra, to beside the passenger station platform at Leongatha.

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  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia

It is a disgrace this line was taken uop.  To remove infrastructure for scrap is just unforgivable.

 

Regards

Brian

  Rodo Chief Commissioner

Location: Southern Riverina
Brian, all of that good infrastructure (ie. rails) was used for improving the the Vic. Rail infrastructure. It went to the grain branchlines and I presume the right of way is still preserved to re-lay with better rail, if a need for a southern port should arise. Only the light rails from east of Welshpool would have gone for scrap and even this rail might have found a home on Queensland cane tramways.
  Boss Chief Commissioner

Location: Caulfield Line

Reidcgk,

 

Good work.  

 


Crying or Very sad Sad to see these videos - railway unlikely to ever return.

  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland

Were any other railways closed In the mid to late 80's dismantled In the same way, using rail recovery trains ?

The Timboon Junction Timboon line had a rail recovery train collect most of It's rails.

 

Mass dismantling must of taken place around 1987 after the closure of 15 lines on the 8th Dec 1986

Dookie - Katamatite

Numurkah - Picola

Wedderburn Junction - Wedderburn

Jeparit - Yanac

Elmore - Diggora West

Hopetoun - Patchewollock

Piangil - Kooloonong

Moe - Yallourn

Bowser - Peechelba East

East Natimuk - Carpolac

Timboon Junction - Timboon

North Creswick - Allendale

East Natimuk - Noradjuha

Traralgon - Cowwarr

Moulamein - Balranald

 

Other lines closed after this date that have been dismantled, were

Bowser - Myrtleford 13/04/1987

Bairnsdale - Orbost 21/08/1987

Cowwarr - Maffra 31/08/1987

Murchison East - Colbinabbin 12/10/1987

Rushworth - Stanhope 12/10/1987

Welshpool - Yarram 26/10/1987

Linton Junction - Skipton 17/02/1988

Nowingi - Millewa South 14/09/1988

Horsham - East Natimuk 19/10/1988

Red Cliffs - Meringur 09/12/1988

Bendigo North - Ranglea 29/05/1990

Barry Beach Junction - Welshpool 05/06/1990

Leongatha - Barry Beach 30/06/1992

Maffa - Stratford Junction 09/03/1995

 

  reidgck Locomotive Fireman

I don't know about other lines except I remember when they pulled the Wonthaggi line up, they heaped up piles of rails forrecovery by road at Kilcunda and probably other places along the line as well.

The rails were not of the heavier quality that would be reused on main lines and branch lines were being closed at the time. Those between Barry Beach Junction and Foster were of similar quality to the Wonthaggi line rails and they were cut up and sent away without the need for rail recovery trains.

The long heavier rails that could be used for mainlines were used again hence the rail recovery trains. It is interesting that the rails between Barry Beach Junction and Welshpool were of the heavier variety and were loaded onto the last train from Barry Beach at Barry Beach Junction in June 1992.
The rail between Yarram and Welshpool was pulled up some time before the Welshpool to Barry Beach section. I don't know the rail quality on that section but it was probably similar to that on the Barry Beach Junction to Foster section. It seems that probable,that as a general rule, rails from the lighter branch lines were scrapped or sold to private buyers while any heavier rail as in the videos of the pulling up of the South Gippsland line, was salvaged for re-use.

Graeme.
  Rodo Chief Commissioner

Location: Southern Riverina
The rails of the Wonthaggi line were 80lb. as it was built as a coal line in 1910. Heavier rails would have been used on the Barrys Beach extension and east of Foster.
The South Eastern main was originally laid with 80lb. rail to Foster and I think that the earlier 60lb. rail extended from there to Yarram. 80lb. rail such as the Wonthaggi line should have been useful in the rehabilitation of many grain lines before being sold off.

Much of the 60lb. rail from the lighter closed branches would have been well past the use by date.
  reidgck Locomotive Fireman


The following notes are compiled from the Australian Railway Historical Society Victorian division  magazine in 1968 - thencalled the "Divisional Diary" 

September 1968: "The relaying of the South-eastern main line between Dandenong and Foster, is now approaching the 85 mile post near Tarwin. As at July 16, there was still 22 miles of track to be replaced between Tarwin and Foster." The item said that progress was about a mile a week and work should be completed in early December. Further it said ballast trains up to 20wagons were used double headed from Melbourne by T and B class locomotives.

The rails being laid to Foster in 1968, would have been the rails that are seen in the videos being removed from the section between Foster and Leongatha in 1994. They would have had some 14 years of use till the last revenue train in 1992.

The April 1968 edition of D.D. reported that work to Foster was expected to be finished by early 1969 and it also said thatthe section from Foster to Yarram had been -- "re-laid some years earlier". It said the Geelong-Ballarat line was being re-laid between Gheringhap and Warrenheip and similar works were scheduled between Maroona and Portland: Relaying was in progress on the Robinvale line between Quambatook and Ultima. The gang on that work was scheduled to switch to work between Wycheproof and sealake when finished about June that year. It also said similar works are planned for between Bairnsdale and orbost.

"Servicable rails released from these projects" the item says " are returned to Spotswood permanent way depot where they are straightened, cropped at each end, and joined into various lengths for re-use at other locations" an example is given that - "Rails from the North-east line were sent to Spotswood and re-used between Dandenong and Foster.

It was stated in the item that the North-eastern line 'had been' re-laid between Broadmeadows and Creighton and work wasexpected to reach Wodonga by 1970 so it was likely rails from about the Broadmeadows - Creighton section that were reconditioned and used on the Yarram line beyond Foster.

It seems that such recovered rail was used between Welshpool and Yarram and between Foster and Barry Beach Junction
rather than between Dandenong and Foster as the item says, because the rail recovered from the Welshpool - Barry beach Junction section and the Leongatha - Foster section were of more modern 94lb/yd rail; and it would surely not have beenpractical to remove such quality rail from the North-east line. It is surely likely that a similar quality newer rail to that being laid on the Dandenong - Foster line, was installed also on the North-east line about the same time.

  stefowefo Chief Train Controller


Other lines closed after this date that have been dismantled, were

Bowser - Myrtleford 13/04/1987

Bairnsdale - Orbost 21/08/1987

Cowwarr - Maffra 31/08/1987

Murchison East - Colbinabbin 12/10/1987

Rushworth - Stanhope 12/10/1987

Welshpool - Yarram 26/10/1987

Linton Junction - Skipton 17/02/1988

Nowingi - Millewa South 14/09/1988

Horsham - East Natimuk 19/10/1988

Red Cliffs - Meringur 09/12/1988

Bendigo North - Ranglea 29/05/1990

Barry Beach Junction - Welshpool 05/06/1990

Leongatha - Barry Beach 30/06/1992

Maffa - Stratford Junction 09/03/1995

"Nightfire"


What about North Geelong - Fyansford?
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
What about North Geelong - Fyansford?
"stefowefo"


This line doesn't fit In the time frame I was talking about.

Other lines that have closed and been dismantled recently are the

Rutherglen - Wahgunyah

Wodonga urban area

Linton Junction - Redan

Spencer Street Yard - Port Melbourne
  Sir Thomas Bent Minister for Railways

Location: Banned
Earlier on, several lines were done using rail recovery trains.  Warragul-Noojee was one example.
  Gus Beginner

Earlier on, several lines were done using rail recovery trains.  Warragul-Noojee was one example.
"Sir Thomas Bent"


Hawthorn-Kew
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland

"Servicable rails released from these projects" the item says " are returned to Spotswood permanent way depot where they are straightened, cropped at each end, and joined into various lengths for re-use at other locations" an example is given that - "Rails from the North-east line were sent to Spotswood and re-used between Dandenong and Foster.

It was stated in the item that the North-eastern line 'had been' re-laid between Broadmeadows and Creighton and work wasexpected to reach Wodonga by 1970 so it was likely rails from about the Broadmeadows - Creighton section that were reconditioned and used on the Yarram line beyond Foster.

It seems that such recovered rail was used between Welshpool and Yarram and between Foster and Barry Beach Junction
rather than between Dandenong and Foster as the item says, because the rail recovered from the Welshpool - Barry beach Junction section and the Leongatha - Foster section were of more modern 94lb/yd rail; and it would surely not have beenpractical to remove such quality rail from the North-east line. It is surely likely that a similar quality newer rail to that being laid on the Dandenong - Foster line, was installed also on the North-east line about the same time.

"reidgck"

Markings on the rails on the down side of Korumburra near the 114 km post, AS 94 LB (1964) AIS 11/1968

Markings on the rails near Bena between the 106 km and 107 km post, AS BHP Co Ltd X 26 90 LBS OH
  reidgck Locomotive Fireman


Reply to Nightfire regarding rail lb/yd on the South Gippsland line: Written was:
"Markings on the rails on the down side of Korumburra near the 114 km post, AS 94 LB (1964) AIS 11/1968
Markings on the rails near Bena between the 106 km and 107 km post, AS BHP Co Ltd X 26 90 LBS OH"

Since that was written, I checked out the rails at Koo Wee Rup on the down side of the toilets built partly across
the permanent way.
Rails there are of 94 lb/yd of 1966 -- 
Then I checked rails near the now deteriorated passenger platform at Lang Lang.
At that location they are of the BHP 90 lb/yd variety as reported as being at Bena.

The section to Bena through Nyora from Lang Lang may possibly completely be of the BHP 90 lb variety
but then, maybe not.
It would be interesting to find the places where they change to 94 lb/yd from 90 and vice versa between
Cranbourne and Leongatha while still possible.

There could be more than a few such locations.
The history of the rails, their manufacturers, their quality, when they were made and other such questions,
are matters that have been largely overlooked in the railway historic interest field.

The guide rails on the Tarwin river bridges were dumped at Koonwarra for a while after being pulled up.
They were branded as dating from the 1800s.

It is interesting that reconditioned rail from the North-eastern line was used on parts of the South Gippsland
line according to the Divisional Diary report mentioned in a posting above.

It is perhaps bewildering trying to imagine the four three cylinder S class steam locomotives in charge of the Spirit of Progress of old, racing along the same rails later re-laid on parts of the Yarram line
on their non-stop run to Albury. Rolling Eyes


  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland

Reply to Nightfire regarding rail lb/yd on the South Gippsland line: Written was:
"Markings on the rails on the down side of Korumburra near the 114 km post, AS 94 LB (1964) AIS 11/1968
Markings on the rails near Bena between the 106 km and 107 km post, AS BHP Co Ltd X 26 90 LBS OH"

Since that was written, I checked out the rails at Koo Wee Rup on the down side of the toilets built partly across
the permanent way.
Rails there are of 94 lb/yd of 1966 -- 
Then I checked rails near the now deteriorated passenger platform at Lang Lang.
At that location they are of the BHP 90 lb/yd variety as reported as being at Bena.

The section to Bena through Nyora from Lang Lang may possibly completely be of the BHP 90 lb variety
but then, maybe not.
It would be interesting to find the places where they change to 94 lb/yd from 90 and vice versa between
Cranbourne and Leongatha while still possible.
"reidgck"


I did find a 94 LB rail at Bena too, ajacent to a 90 LB but I only looked like a small section welded In.

You could hardly notice the trasition from one to the other.

  reidgck Locomotive Fireman

There is a short length of 90 lb rail welded in to a 94 lb length on the down side of the level crossing, and just on the downside of the sub station at Cranbourne. Here also, the transition and weld are practically not noticable. The two brands of rail are practicaly the same in dimension. It looks as if the said join was 'not' done on location.

The sleepers have deteriorated badly in this location since the railway closed. The proposed upgrade to a new suburban station on the downside of Cranbourne will require new sleepers. probably concrete.   
  jack_lives_here Locomotive Driver

Location: Witness Protection Program
As Boss said, it is sad to see these videos, but it's great that people like reidgck go to such an effort to film all these things. Great work, thanks for sharing these. 

  darcycammo Chief Train Controller

Location: cockatoo vic

As Boss said, it is sad to see these videos, but it's great that people like reidgck go to such an effort to film all these things. Great work, thanks for sharing these. 
"jack_lives_here"


 

What has happened to all the video's?

  reidgck Locomotive Fireman

The videos were accidently deleted
----------------------------------
The videos regarding the pulling up of the
South Gippsland Railway, have now been reposted at
http://vimeo.com/album/2408979
in an album regarding the South Gippsland Railway
  historian Assistant Commissioner

Markings on the rails on the down side of Korumburra near the 114 km post, AS 94 LB (1964) AIS 11/1968

Markings on the rails near Bena between the 106 km and 107 km post, AS BHP Co Ltd X 26 90 LBS OH
Nightfire

Translating...

AS 94 LB (1964) AIS 11/1968

Australian Standard section, 1964 edition, 94lb, rolled by Australian Iron & Steel (i.e. Port Kembla) in November 1968

AS BHP Co Ltd X 26 90 LBS OH

Australian Standard section, 1st edition, 90lbs, rolled by BHP (i.e. Newcastle) in October 1926 from open hearth steel.

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