Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Broadmeadow: 5 minutes watching trains

I'd travelled through Broadmeadow Railway Station aboard a train many times over the course of my life, including while writing my Train Tripping Eastern Australia eBook. However, I'd never had the opportunity of disembarking to photograph Broadmeadow's 1887 timber station building. That changed recently, when on our way to checking in to our accommodation in the Hunter Valley, I found myself pulling our car up alongside the Broadmeadow's commuter car park armed with my new camera, and being told by my wife "you've got five minutes."

DL class locomotive DL42 was second unit behind NR42, passing through Broadmeadow in May 2016.

Fortuitously, those 5 minutes provided me with a train enthusiasts version of nirvana, as no fewer than 3 trains passed through in quick succession. There is an overpass at the southern end of Broadmeadow Railway Station, and no sooner than I had scaled the steps leading up to Lambton Road I was interrupted by that familiar rumble of a diesel engine. I turned in time to capture these trailing shots of a northbound Pacific National freight train, headed by NR42, DL42 and NR59.

NR59 was third in line on this northbound container train. May 2016.

While this northbound container train slowly rumbled past on the passing lane adjacent to platform 3, the northbound Grafton XPT arrived on platform 1 for its scheduled stop.

The northbound Grafton XPT, photographed at Broadmeadow Station, Thursday 12th May, 2016.

Broadmeadow Station is located in Newcastle's western suburbs, approximately 162 km north of Sydney's Central Station. Situated on the busy Main North Line, the electrified line was once a busy locomotive changing point. Electric 46 and 86 class locos would replace diesels for the run south into Sydney. Since the mid 1990's however, freight trains now continue through to Sydney behind diesel power, and the 46, 85 and 86 class electrics are now just a memory from the past.

Action aplenty at Broadmeadow Railway Station, May 2016.

Sitting north of the station waiting for a clear road south, was an Endeavour railcar set, and as the 1.5 km long container train slowed to allow the departing XPT to leapfrog it on the Main North Line, the 2 car Endeavour set slowly proceeded south through platform 1.

Broadmeadow Railway Station in 2016. The timber buildings on platforms 2 and 3 date back to 1887.

Not stopping for passengers, it was obvious that this 2 car set was on its way to be stabled in Broadmeadow Yard on the southern side of Lambton Road overpass. Still wearing the blue and yellow CityRail livery, and stripped bare of all CityRail signage and graffiti, the Endeavour set looked like it was ready for the paint shops. Perhaps next time I am down in the Newcastle area, I might happen to photograph these trains wearing the new NSW TrainLink livery that has recently been applied to the Hunter Railcars. If you're not sure what that looks like, the link below to my previous blog post on Hamilton Railway Station will reveal all.

This Endeavour set headed by 2802 looked ready for a repaint when I photographed it in May 2016.

Although time was escaping me and I didn't get the shot I was hoping to use in my book 30 Years Chasing Trains on account of all the overhead wiring, it was good to finally add some photos of this station in Newcastle's west to my blog. After hopping back behind the wheel of our car in less than 5 minutes, (much to my wife's surprise), we had a deadline to meet further west where we were due to check into our accommodation in the Hunter Valley. Not that I can complain. I had just spent the past 6 hours driving to as many train watching hotspots around Newcastle as was possible. Broadmeadow of course was just one of the locations I described in my book Train Tripping Eastern Australia, which is a smaller, more modern equivalent of a Down Under Bradshaw's railway guide. At just $0.99 to download onto your iPad, phone or eReader, the eBook has now been a solid Top 10 Bestseller on Kobo for the past year. As for the shots I was looking to include in my book 30 Years Chasing Trains? I found them at nearby Carrington Dock and Hamilton. But as usual, that's a story for another day.

Available from only $0.99 through the following retailers


See also; Hamilton: Newcastle's historic railway station

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