I noticed that the Snuggery triangle on the defunct? Tantanoola line has been removed, as well as all remains into the former factory and the private sidings into the Kimberly-Clark factory across the main road.
Yes it's all gone another era gone into oblivion, as be of no use anymore as that private property. To my knowledge the triangle did not belong to railways, but always used by railways. The steam historical steam trains use to use it on their trips to Snuggery
It was used originally for steam trains to turn around before diesels came along. Of course later on was handy for single ended 930's. But it was used nearly everyday for many, many years, right up till near closure of S.E line.
Why was the triangle removed?
I guess the owners maybe got a few bucks for unused scrap railway iron, that never be of any use to them anymore. Railway iron is much sort after by cockies. In Apcel some of the track is under concrete for road trucks to drive over after end of rail.
What was the purpose of the triangle and these private sidings?
What was carried and where to?
Better make a cup of coffee mate, and put feet up and read on, this no fairy story.
Well once upon a time there was a nice SAR railway that was very busy, but since has faded off into sunset into that old railway heaven in the sky.
Oh! You want the story about it at cellulose, well.........
There was these two trains a day, that was happy days.
The first train departed Mount at 10:30am to Millicent and only went to Millicent and shunted mills for any loading on way back. When the briquettes for Apcel started up, these were sent always on the morning Millicent and while train at Millicent these wagons were unloaded and then picked up on the return and would go out on the 6pm night vicy. Note: The 6am to 8am morning Vicy would bring these briquettes anywhere between 6 to 12 hopper type wagons and take empty briquette wagons back out that evening. An odd wagon would often catch fire, smoking like a steam train, especially if light rain on them as the coal would catch fire and we would have to get the Fire Brigade to quell fire with lots of water, then rush the wagon to Apcel so they could unload it straight away. Good fun.
The daytime Millicent had basically Millicent loading, plus super for sidings on way and would go to Millicent. Single ended 930's were mostly not used on the day Millicent. Were used on night Snuggery, but occasionally they were used in emergency to Millicent. They would then run reverse back to Cellulose from Millicent then turn the engine on triangle also at same time shunt Cellulose for the night train loading for the 8:30pm Mile End jet and Passenger and the 6pm dep Vicy jet. It would also shunt Apcel for toilet paper etc and Tanty for Dolomite wagons all for night Vicy jet. The day Millicent normally would not take empties for Cellulose or Apcel Mills unless urgently required, but would pickup all available loaded wagons for night jets. Though in latter years the Millicent would take empty louver vans for Apcel, as Apcel was quite busy then. Cellulose was a non event then.
The second train departed at 6:30pm called the "night snuggery" This took out empties as well as loading for both mills
In earlier days Cellulose was a huge concern. Big tonnages of inwards white pulp paper from Sweden for mixing in with cardboard, and waste paper. Also wagons of recycle paper and cardboard came out of cellulose using mostly M type vans. If these wagons of paper rolls got away in a loose shunt with crook handbrake, the rolls were so heavy they would bulge out the end of the box car, fortunately not often. Cellulose was busy place till around late 70's, then Cellulose slowly closed down in early 80's (I think memory fades a little now
). Shunting in Cellulose was a major job to do. Remember, only hand signals and hand lamps used in those days, no radios. Always a guard and a porter were booked for the late afternoon Snuggery 6:30pm departure that only went to Snuggery and return.
Here is a rough rundown. Once you got to Snuggery on that 6:30pm night train. Cellulose only had about 3, maybe 4 spur lines and they were always full of loaded and empty wagons. One could not swing a cat out there at anytime. A near nightmare for train staff.
The Triangle was very important as we would take train to Snuggery, stop between the two triangle points on main line, then cut off GB on the main between the two triangle points. The train was always marshalled in proper order before departure and it was only a matter of first pushing the whole train completely into Cellulose (was a huge place with long track
) and couple to the loaded box cars often 20 or 30 of them, throw the points and pull out onto mainline now facing Mt Gambier direction. It was usually a huge long string by then. Then push the loaded box cars back onto GB on main line. Then go place the empty box cars, remember your still got a huge string of empties and loaded pulp paper.
All hand signals or should I say a hand kerosene lamp with a huge track curve into the cardboard loading dock and normally was easy to see engineman. There was always high packs of recycle cardboard bales and white pulp heaps stacked close to track. The porter most times had to climb on top of the paper stacks so see guard and engineman at same time. It was often hair raising stuff, also chuck in it was raining and windy as hell at times. Remember also this is the South East where "it rains 11 months of the year and drips off the trees the rest of the year, but not last few years".
The hardest part was not to smash into the dead end inside the cellulose building with the long strings. The dead end was built pretty solid, so it would stop you dead or damage the coupling on M van. Also put the engine crew hard back into their seats. Kept them awake to be vigilant for hand and lamp signals. Also all drivers are different, so you on the ground had to learn their habits quickly. When two way radios finally came in mid 1980’s it was pure bliss. The main part was not to get run over out there.
Then you picked up the empty OB's and the long car container wagons that had been used for waste recycle cardboard from Mile End, place them on main line with other empty OB's that had white pulp paper in. Now you could place the loaded waste paper and white pulp paper, then back onto the train and do air test and write up wagon numbers and tonnages as you were done with Cellulose. The worse part now over.
But that's not all you still had all of Apcel's empty VLX type vans with obf's of soda ash next to engine. It was just a matter of pulling whole train over the Millicent road Xing just in clear and go to work shunting Apcel nearly same again. pull out the loaded louver vans and empty obfs and place the empties and loaded soda ash. Then get back home around 4am or 5am if your lucky just in time for the morning 5am shunt crew to then pull your train to bits. Oh also there was Gy’s and Obf’s of super to place, at sidings like Marte and pickup empties and loaded dolomite on way back.
But then, the big bad wolf came along in sheep's clothing and huffed and puffed and trashed it all, so only thing left is the sad rail ending and no triangle anymore, the final end to an interesting era. Glad I was fortunate to have lived it.