THE sound of model trains chugging around carefully-designed tracks will soon be heard in Murrurundi.
A two-day festival is set to showcase old electric, steam and modern trains on October 22 and 23 as the local community pays respect to an important part of its history.
Six different sites throughout the town will have layouts on display from clubs including Newcastle, Sydney, and the Hunter region.
Numerous tracks featuring trains of all descriptions will be at the Information Centre, RSL, Bowling Club, CWA Hall, and Polding Street.
A typical highlight for children is Thomas the Tank Engine, which travels around the track rolling its eyes.
Apart from the trains, Aberdeen’s Big Boys Toys are showing off their vintage vehicles, while remote control cars and helicopter flights will feature.
Murrurundi Rotary Club’s Colin Stanford said he hoped the event would help raise more awareness of the railway’s crucial role in the town’s development.
“The history is so important to the railway here because it was the biggest loco shed [in the late 19th century] from here to Newcastle,” he said.
“It was the end of the line, they had workshops here and everything. But you’d never know; once they finished they pulled it all down and wrecked it, there was nothing left behind.
“So that’s what we’re trying to do – recreate the history.”
The first train steamed into Murrurundi on April 5, 1872.
In the years that followed, it was then the head of the so-called Great Northern Railway.
Due to the forbidding Liverpool Range, a tunnel had to be built, with the town becoming the terminus of the railway for five years.
It was a hive of activity at the time and served as an important transport centre, offloading passengers, goods, farm equipment and livestock.
For this year’s festival, both Saturday and Sunday will be filled with fun, food and plenty of entertainment.
It is scheduled to start at Murrurundi Bowling Club with the annual Rose Show from 9am. Contact Mr Stanford on 0438078563 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information