At the New Zealand Railway and Locomotive Society’s Annual General Meeting in Auckland in 2010, Graeme Carter, the Society’s President, announced the establishment of the Thomas McGavin Research Grant.
Tom passed away in February of this year and the Society’s Board felt that a lasting memorial to his lifetime’s work was appropriate.
Tom founded the Society in 1944 and was active in the Society all his life, holding most executive positions throughout the 66 years. He edited the Society’s journal, The New Zealand Railway Observer, for 54 years, only retiring at age 78 in 1998.
The Thomas McGavin Research Grant is to be available annually, in one or more individual grants, up to the value of $2,000. The grant is open to anyone for research in the chosen field of New Zealand rail transport. The research work is expected to be finished within 12 months of the grant being awarded and the completed project lodged with the Society within 24 months. The Society has the discretion to publish the work as a book, an article in The Observer, or retaining it in the Society’s archive for future reference.
Graeme Carter told the meeting that, in creating the grant, the Society is known for publishing quality books about railways in New Zealand. This grant is a means of encouraging people to research topics that they might otherwise find not possible, and also to boost the Society’s range of published works. The Society looks forward to making the first grant, being the first of its kind available in New Zealand, setting new standards of research that can be shared by all with interests in rail transport.
Applications for the Thomas McGavin Research Grant close on 31 March each year.