BACK IN THE DAY: Train at the Amiens Railway Terminus.
BACK IN THE DAY: Train at the Amiens Railway Terminus. Jean Harslett Collection

Amiens rail plans on track

THE Friends of St Deny's were recipients in round 90 of the Queensland Government's Gambling Community Benefit Fund announced late last year.

Friends of St Deny's, which is currently undergoing a name change to Amiens Historical Association, received $35,000 which treasurer Paula Boatfield said the association was incredibly thankful for, and will be put towards the association's railway project.

"Our project is to not only honour the memory of the soldiers that returned and the families that were established here, but to honour the memory of that branch line,” Mrs Boatfield said.

The branch line allowed the produce grown by soldiers to be taken to market.

Negotiations are currently under way for the association to purchase land in Amiens, where the mound for the train is visible.

"We want to lay a section of line back there, I think up to 300m... and then place the railway carriage on the line,” Mrs Boatfield said.

The Southern Downs Steam Railway have provided the association with a railway carriage, which dates back to the era.

Once the track has been laid and the carriage placed, restoration will begin.

"We'll be seeking help from the community, people that are interested in helping us with this project,” Mrs Boatfield said.

"People that have got skills in restoring train equipment and natural train buffs that are interested in anything to do with the rail.”

While the grant won't complete the project, Mrs Boatfield said it will help.

"It (the grant) gives us a good start,” she said.

"It'll get the train carriage here and will buy a lot of materials to get us started.”

This project also compliments the recently completed tour guides of the Armistice Way and Amiens township.

"The tour guide of the Armistice Way concentrates on the route that Cottonvale/ Amiens branch line took as it wound its way through battlefields and villages on its way from Cottonvale to Amiens,” Mrs Boatfield said.

For more information, visit www.amiensqldhistory.comor email info@amiensqldhistory.com. Alternatively, phone The Friends of St Deny's president Roger Willis on 0438100577 or email currawonga@activ8.net.au.

Stanthorpe Border Post


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