Canberra Railway Museum

Canberra Railway Museum contains a variety of exhibits and includes the railway yard housing most of the Australian Railway Historical Society’s rolling stock – locomotives, rail motors, passenger cars, freight cars and track-maintenance vehicles. See also separate entry, Michelago Tourist Railway.

Canberra Railway Museum contains a variety of exhibits including the railway yard itself (part of extensive rail facilities built in the 1970s), steam and diesel locomotives, rail motors, passenger carriages and freight vehicles. Vintage wooden passenger carriages (over 100 years old), with their open platforms, through to more recent stainless steel passenger cars are housed at the yard. A guided tour is provided so visitors can walk through the public areas to see a selection of this rolling stock at the Museum platform, in the railway yard or in the Society’s restoration workshop.

As the Society is a working railway, the exhibits on display can change if there are trains operating on the day of your visit. However the collection usually includes these exhibits:

Canberra’s most important heritage locomotive, 1210, built in 1878, was restored to working order by the Society in 1988 as an Australian Bicentennial Grant project. It hauled the first train into Canberra in 1914 and prior to being restored, it was plinthed outside Canberra Station for many years.

The beautifully-restored tender locomotive 3016, which started life as a tank engine hauling Sydney suburban trains prior to electrification, is usually stabled at the Museum between trips.

The giant 265 tonne Beyer-Garratt steam locomotive 6029 is currently undergoing a major restoration to working order by our skilled volunteers. Visitors are able to view the progress and craftsmanship close up.

You can observe the rudimentary comfort of a ‘dogbox’ carriage, and American-style end-platform carriages, which operated in Sydney before the “red rattler” electric trains replaced them. Appreciate the craftsmanship of the carriage builders, with the ornate polished timber and metal ceilings of the vintage Pullman carriages. The kids will be fascinated at the display of sleeping cars, including some from the luxury Southern Aurora train, with their double bunks for that overnight trip before Motels were the way to go.

Get up close to heritage listed diesel locomotive 4403 (originally built for the prestigious interstate express trains) which usually resides at the Museum platform. Climb into the driver’s cab for a first-hand view of how the major trains that ran between capital cities were controlled. Hear from our experienced guide just how these machines were driven.

Also on display are the unique 80 year old ‘Tin Hare’ rail motors, one of which provided a passenger service to Captain’s Flat for many years.

Opening times: 1pm to 4pm on Sundays. (Open from 11am on last Sunday of the month, except December). Admission Entry applies.

Location: Geijera Pl., at the end of Cunningham St, Kingston. Ph: 02 6232 6405.

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