The building is expected to be finished on 15th December 2003. That is, the shell will be finished. The rail tracks are sitting in front of it and the Ransomes and Rapier crane will, we hope, lift them into position so that our W&M carriage can be housed when it arrives.
5th December 2003 and the side posts are being erected
16th December and it’s nearly ready
The building is 100 feet long by 40 feet across. There are two roller doors to be fitted to the near end and of course the end wall needs finishing yet. The rail is ready to be installed in it next weekend. The gap seen at the bottom of the walls will go once the ballast and concrete floor are in place. There are no windows or other doors yet. These will be installed when needed.
23rd of January – it’s all go
Rail Track laying is started. The work train has come – pushed in by the Silver Stream Railway’s De class Diesel. Some ballast in our “Q” wagons, the caterpillar and some sleepers can be seen. These with a crane truck have been used to install two tracks into the building, through the roller doors. The official commissioning ceremony was on March the 6th at 2.00 p.m.
more details later.
The final product will be restored back to its red Wellington and Manawatu Railways livery.
The Commissioning of the New Building
This was presided over by our President Rob Merrifield. The Mayor of Upper Hutt City, Rex Kirton gave the council’s perspective and the value of such ammenities to the growth of the city. Bruce Fordyce of the Hawkes Bay NZRLS told some of the history of the carriage and this was amplified by Bob Stott who was one of the original purchasers of the carriage in 1961 for 25 pounds and has been involved with its preservation through the Rail Heritage Trust. Paul Swain, MP had some thoughts on the purpose and objectives of the Society in connection with the building and the developement of the site..
With organisation and help from the local Forest & Bird branch we planted 250 native trees and shrubs on the north-eastern boundary, alongside the entrance driveway. The weather was not the best at times but work proceeded at a fast pace. The excavator’s help was appreciated in readying the ground for digging and clearing off the grass and weeds. Morning tea was provided by the boys of the Silver Stream Railway who bought it up from McCurdy by train.
Looking back along the driveway to the road we see the excavator working on the second area alongside the boundary fence.
Some of the 120 plants in the near area have been heeled in and are getting their protective wind, vermin shields.
The bare earth was later covered with a mulch to protect during the drier weather. The wall is our boundary and behind is a residential home for the elderly.