Castlemaine and Ballast

A big day today, with Castlemaine Turntable once again connected to the network.

The final rails were cut to length and everything fastened up. Rolf marked oit the curve and only very minor tweaking was needed to form a very nice approach to the turntable.

Loco’s will once again be able to turn on the turntable from tomorrow, albeit at walking pace over this section of track until its ballasted and tamped.

In other news, Muckleford has become a hive of activity over the past week, with close to 4000 tonnes of ballast having been delivered.

What started as a small pile, quickly grew to a mountain!

We’re the extremely fortunate recipients of this ballast that has been disposed of by VLine from works through Elphinstone Tunnel and nearby areas.

Many many thanks go to Ecologiq and Vline’s project and environmental teams for making this happening. Also thankyou to our local member Maree Edwards, RDV Bendigo, EPA and Victrack SCB team for all their support in getting this valuable resource diverted to us.

As part of the process, all the ballast has been through a screen, where contaminated fines and oversize lumps of rubbish are removed, leaving us with close to brand new ballast to use on the upgrading of our track.

The pile of rock is nothing short of impressive and we do count ourselves very fortunate that it has been made available to us.

We’re only one of several tourist and heritage railways around Victoria, all of which have similar needs and like us often have very limited finances and resources.

We’re hoping this project might help pave the way for not only our Railway, but all the other similar railways to have opportunities to recover such materials (ballast, rail, sleepers etc…) and help reuse and recycle these materials which are otherwise often considered waste.

Next week, all going well, will see more work at Castlemaine, with a start being made on installing track in the loco shed West road. Check back Monday for details of Tuesday.

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