2004 - Government assumes ownership of national rail network and forms ONTRACK to run it. Discover New Zealand travel destinations and attractions by rail, bus and ferry. 1953 - The length of railway line operating hits its all-time peak - 5656km. Inland travel was difficult because of the mountains, forests and swamps, so most people used sea and river transport, or walked. All maps are licensed for re-use under Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike NZ 3.0. Arthurs Pass Railway Station 1967.. The first railway lines were built in the South Island in the 1860s. While our rail network isn’t vast, thanks to their skill and determination, there are some incredible train journeys on offer. This led to the coining of the phrase "KB country" to describe the area, made famous by the National Film Unit's documentary of the same title. Three of the locomotives were introduced for operation on the North Island Main Trunk. [33], NZR's 1963–1964 year-end financial report showed that inter-island ferry services contributed $1.07 million to NZRs profit of $1.077 million. By the 1920s New Zealand Railways (NZR) was carrying more than six million tons of freight and 28 million passengers a year - a remarkable achievement for a nation of just over a million people. They were at the time the most powerful class of locomotives in New Zealand. New Zealand Railways (old and what's left of them too) In 1968 the "Blue Streak" refurbished railcars were introduced to the Wellington–Auckland run, having failed to raise patronage between Hamilton and Auckland. This "first sod turning" got me thinking about more early New Zealand history. 2008 – present day - Government funds projects totalling more than $900 million to modernise Wellington’s commuter rail system and allow for longer, faster trains and more services to meet growing commuter demand. On foot, I follow the railway tracks 660 metres down New Zealand's longest wharf to the end, where they split into four sidings. For the first time, the Department employed significant numbers of women to meet the shortages. Today second hand copies change hands at twice the original retail price. /records/22794307. Expand/collapse. The introduction of a roll-on roll-off train ferry changed that. D-J Paper over boards Small owner's stamp FEP Near Fine. A. L. Beattie became Chief Mechanical Officer in April 1900. To send goods between the islands, freight had to be unloaded from wagons onto a ship on one island, unloaded at the other and then loaded back into wagons to resume its journey by rail. Following the abolition of the provinces in 1877, the Public Works Department took over the various provincial railways. Everyday low prices and free delivery on … Buy The Railways of New Zealand : A Journey Through History 2nd (revised) by Churchman, Geoffrey B.; Hurst, Tony (ISBN: 9780908876204) from Amazon's Book Store. New Zealand Railways (old and what's left of them too) From 1925 these included the Leyland experimental petrol railcar and a fleet of Model T Ford railbuses, the Sentinel-Cammell steam railcar and from 1926 the Clayton steam railcar and successful Edison battery-electric railcar. 1972 (errata slip) 254p. The NZR&LS Archives hold a number of working drawings of D class locomotives, which have all been scanned. 1990 – Rail is restructured into a limited liability company, New Zealand Rail (NZR). 2008 - The Government buys back Toll's rail and ferry business for $665m, after several months of negotiations. A chronological history of New Zealand rail. 1936 - First successful railcars, Wairarapa route. In 1881 it took the Thames Valley and Rotorua Railway Company 12 months to find a suitable passage over the Mamaku Ranges. The following year the Canadian built General Motors DF class was introduced. In 1950, Straits Air Freight Express (later known as SAFE Air) took over the contract from the RNZAF. In February 1867, Southland Province opened a branch from Invercargill to Bluff to the international standard gaugeof 4 ft 8 ⁄2 in (1,43… Following the success of the Wairarapa railcar class, in 1938 the Standard class railcars were introduced. Almost everyone travelling between major centres took … New rolling stock included the Silver Star luxury Wellington–Auckland overnight train, sourced from Japan. New Zealand Government Railways operated a number of small four-coupled steam tank locomotives known as class D. Several went on to second careers with private owners. In 1978 a major rebuilding programme of the ageing DA class was launched, creating the DC class. The New Zealand Railway system which was already under state control before the First World War reached its ultimate size in the 1950s. 1870 - With less than 100km of track operating, Prime Minister Julius Vogel calls for railways to aid economic development, and a narrow gauge is chosen to save money. At first, they were deployed to the North Island Main Trunk but gradually began working the express freight trains for which they were ordered throughout the North Island. The Railways Department followed a traditional branch structure, which was carried over to the corporation. A guide on New Zealand national travel networks and routes lines system. Retrieved on 2008-03-25. New Zealand Touring Map (opens in new window) [PDF 4.5MB] i-SITE map. We are woven into communities across the country through our 3400 people in 50 towns and cities and we have an ambitious vision for New Zealand’s transport future. [39] While Hayward was not against road transport deregulation, he was in favour of greater investment in NZR to meet freight requirements and shutting down uneconomic services. [24] The failure of this class lead to the introduction of the K class in 1932. This led to the introduction of the DA class in 1955, the largest fleet of diesel-electric locomotives NZR ever introduced. First train carried MPs on a junket to Auckland, in August (pictured on left). Following a change of Government in 1975, the Robert Muldoon led National Government decided to increase the transport licensing limited from 40 miles (64 km) to 150 km. In 1946 the last class of steam locomotives built by NZR was introduced, the JA class. ↑ 3.0 3.1 Statistics New Zealand - Long term data series - Transport. The Act had the effect of authorising the Wellington and Manawatu Railway Company to build the Wellington-Manawatu Line.[7]. [21] An exception was the Stratford–Okahukura Line, finished in 1933. Until the railway network was developed in the late 19th century, New Zealand’s uncompromising landscape meant overland travel was often extremely difficult. Since then, successive Governments have recognised its critical role in New Zealand transport and the value it delivers to communities, regional economies, exporters and businesses. The Westfield deviation was completed in 1930 and the Tawa deviation proceeded at a snail's pace. In the 1917 Annual Report, a record 5.3% return on investment was made. Christmas Eve crash at Tangiwai kills 151 rail passengers. About the authors. In 1931 it was claimed half a million tons of freight had been lost to road transport. [40] A pilot scheme of TMS began in 1973 on the Palmerston North - Gisborne Line between Woodville and Gisborne. The section was electrified at 1,500 V DC, due to the steep grade in the tunnel, and included its own hydro-electric power station. New Zealand’s first steam-powered public railway was a 7-kilometre line from Christchurch to Ferrymead, which opened in 1863. In 1906 the Dunedin railway station was completed, architect George Troup. For 2014 apart from being another Thames heritage Week, is also a jubilee year for Hamilton. Download and print the New Zealand Touring Map to see information on each of the regions in New Zealand and 16 themed highways. Railways were built and towns sprang up or expanded. ... West Coast New Zealand History (26th May 2019). The most important construction project for NZR at this time was the central section of the North Island Main Trunk. Despite these efforts, there was still considerable negativity about railways and the service they offered. In the nineteenth century there was no other form of land transport except horses, and horse-drawn carts and stage-coaches and every small settlement wanted a railway as a … We are pleased to announce that the Northern Explorer, Coastal Pacific and TranzAlpine trains have returned to the tracks for spring and summer. NZR's first single-purpose log trains, called "express loggers", began to operate on this branch. At the same time, a protracted legal battle began with the New Zealand Midland Railway Company, which was only resolved in 1898. The last timetabled train arrived in Nelson on Friday September 2, 1955 and there was a last-ditch public meeting on the Church Steps. Due to coal shortages the K, J, KA, JA classes of steam locomotives were converted from coal to oil burning. The worst railway disaster in New Zealand’s history occurred on Christmas Eve 1953, when the Wellington–Auckland night express plunged into the flooded Whangaehu River, just west of Tangiwai in the central North Island. [33] The service was very successful, leading to criticism, when the Wellington–Lyttelton overnight ferry was withdrawn, that NZR was competing unfairly with private operators. Opening of the Midland Railway, Stillwater junction. Future of Rail . The Railways Board was abolished by the First Labour Government in 1936.[3]. Most of New Zealand’s early European settlements were on the coast. New Zealand Railway History in Photos. Hillside built 9 NZR TR class diesel shunters. In the late 1800s, the Premier, Sir Julius Vogel, imagined we would one day see every farm, mill and mine within easy reach of a railhead and branch lines feeding the North and South Island Main Trunk lines. In the same year, Gordon Coates became the Minister of Railways. Housed in the historic Waitakere Station, the model is filled with intricate details and colourful characters for our youngest visitors to find. As a result, non-essential services remained in effect until the end of 1919. UPDATE: Services returned for the summer! 2012 – Napier to Gisborne rail line mothballed after severe storm causes extensive damage north of Wairoa. Amid many protests, the isolated Nelson Section was closed, although future Nelson Railway Proposals resurfaced from 1957. New Zealand touring map. The final section of the then ECMT, the Taneatua Branch, was also completed. For more than 155 years, rail has played a critical role in New Zealand’s transport system. While the Westfield and Tawa Flat deviations proceeded, the Milson deviation and Rimutaka Tunnel projects remained stalled. [39], In 1981, parliament passed the New Zealand Railways Corporation Act, and the department was corporatised as the New Zealand Railways Corporation on 1 April 1982.[2]. This definitive history of railways advertising is a time capsule of New Zealand life and examines the art of Railways Studios, detailing its formative place in New Zealand design and art history. 2018 – Govt funding announced to enable the reopening of the mothballed Napier to Wairoa line. Today New Zealand is home to more than 5 million people. 1993 - Government announces sale of NZR to a consortium of Wisconsin Central Transportation Corp and Berkshire Partners (60 per cent stake) and Fay Richwhite (40 per cent) for $328.3m. A guide on New Zealand national travel networks and routes lines system. 151 people died when the Wellington-Auckland express was derailed due to a bridge collapse north of Tangiwai due to a lahar from a volcanic eruption, in what became known as the Tangiwai disaster. 5.000000. New Zealand Railways may refer to KiwiRail, a division of New Zealand Railways Corporation, which is the current rail services owner/operator and infrastructure owner/maintainer.. New Zealand Railways may also refer to the following defunct companies: . [13] The war soon affected the supply of coal to the railways. 1986 – Labour government makes railways a state-owned enterprise. [26], Alongside these changes, in 1931 the Railways Department was briefly restructured into the Government Railways Board. Instead, in August 1881 the Railways Construction and Land Act was passed, allowing joint-stock companies to build and run private railways, as long as they were built to the government's standard rail gauge of 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in) and connected with the government railway lines. This included a number of steps to make passenger trains faster, more efficient and cheaper to run. The Rail Heritage Trust of New Zealand was establshed in 1991. The locomotive is now preserved in Dunedin near the railway station. 29.000000. added the pin Manor Park station, Lower Hutt In October 1969, the first unit coal trains were introduced, between coal mines at Huntly and New Zealand Steel at Mission Bush. The locomotives gave good service, but were not powerful or numerous enough to seriously displace steam traction. This again saw English Electric supply locomotives, the EC class. New Zealand has a long and colourful railway history, dating from the first public line linking Ferrymead and the new town of Christchurch in 1863. 1978 – Completion of the Kaimai tunnel signals more direct freight link between Waikato and Bay of Plenty. More classes followed over the years, primarily to operate regional services. Despite this, NZR had record revenues in 1940. New Zealand Railways No. The following year, he put forward a "Programme of Improvements and New Works'".[18]. The line stopped about 1.5 miles (2 km) short of Blenheim until it was extended in 1880/1. Completed in 1988 at a cost of $250 million. The service was discontinued in the early 1980s.[30]. That year, the private Port Chalmers Railway Company Limited was acquired by the department and new workshops at Addington opened. New Zealand Rail Maps provides free high-quality maps of the national railway network of New Zealand. As a result, the "scramble for pie and tea at Taihape" became a part of New Zealand folklore. New Zealand Railway History in Photos. [5] The acquisition in 1908 of the Wellington and Manawatu Railway Company and its railway line marked the completion of the North Island Main Trunk from Wellington to Auckland. The station was closed in 1990, with a new station being built at Addington. He was often also the Minister of Public Works. [36] The US-built General Electric U26C DX class locomotives were introduced in 1972, with a further batch arriving in 1975. 1955 – Rimutaka tunnel opens, eclipsing Otira as the longest at 8.8km and Nelson railway closes. On Christmas Eve 1953, the worst disaster in NZR's history, and one of the worst in New Zealand's history occurred. The Kinleith Branch was shortly followed in 1957 by the 57 kilometres (35 mi) long Murupara Branch, which was opened running through the Bay of Plenty's Kaingaroa Forest. 2011 – New DL freight locomotives introduced as part of wider investment in new freight rolling stock. In 1972 the first Silver Fern railcars were introduced for the daytime Wellington–Auckland run. Since the 1860s the phenomenon of the railway has dominated the attention of the public in New Zealand. With the recent completion of the North Island Main Trunk Line (1908) and takeover of its only major private competitor (the Wellington and Manawatu Railway Company), New Zealand Railways (NZR) was unquestionably the country’s pre-eminent land transport provider. 1971 saw the introduction of scheduled ISO shipping container services to New Zealand. Steam locomotive hauling a passenger train. The subject is an unlikely one but as you journey through the life and times of a small part of a once-large government department you realise that the raw material: artwork, photographs, trains, people at work, advertising and much more, is pretty well a summary of 20th-century New Zealand. From the late 1950s branch lines closed, and by the 2000s, there were less than 4,000 kilometres of railway lines. (Auckland Star, 1925-08-27)", "Appendix to the Journals of the House of Representatives, Report of the Government Railways Board", New Zealand Railway and Locomotive Society, "Transforming our economy—Container shipping", "Road transport regulation a controversial measure to protect railways", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=New_Zealand_Railways_Department&oldid=1002622072, Defunct transport organisations based in New Zealand, Former government agencies of New Zealand, Rolling stock manufacturers of New Zealand, New Zealand companies established in 1880, Use New Zealand English from September 2017, All Wikipedia articles written in New Zealand English, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Various diesel locomotives have been rebuilt at NZR workshops, for example, five of the DA as DC, though most rebuilding has been contracted out. The role of operating the rail network was subsequently separated from that of the network's construction. Our people They discovered New Zealand as they explored the Pacific, navigating by ocean currents and the winds and stars.In some traditions, the navigator credited with discovering New Zealand is Kupe. Our three iconic trains, Coastal Pacific, Northern Explorer, TranzAlpine and our Interislander Cook Strait ferry offer a seamless connection between the North and South islands, and to many spectacular destinations along the way. [5], The Railways Department was formed in 1880 during the premiership of Sir John Hall. After the abolition of provincial governments in 1876, the Central Government took over the building of railways in New Zealand… The railcars were designed to take over provincial inter-city routes but proved to be mechanically unreliable. In Website West Coast New Zealand History. With the new millennium came renewed enthusiasm for rail – globally and here in New Zealand. 518 likes. In the early 20th century, NZR had begun investigating railcar technology to provide passenger services on regional routes and rural branch lines where carriage trains were not economic and "mixed" trains (passenger carriages attached to freight trains) were undesirably slow. KiwiRail’s purpose, to deliver stronger connections for a better New Zealand, drives our teams every day to improve services for our customers through our major infrastructure projects. New Zealand has a long and colourful railway history, dating from the first public line linking Ferrymead and the new town of Christchurch in 1863. Trains also delivered schoolchildren to the classroom, suburban workers to factories and offices, and thousands of day-trippers to beaches, parks, shows and racecourses. New Zealand has a rich and fascinating history, reflecting our unique mix of Māori and European culture. [9] Apart from four periods of government-appointed commissions (1889–1894, 1924–1928, 1931–1936 and 1953–1957), this system remained in place until the department was corporatised in 1982. From the 1950s, rail's central role in the daily life of New Zealanders began to erode, as travellers opted to drive or fly rather than use passenger trains. The topography of New Zealand made the construction of railways a major engineering problem, not least the need for 150 tunnels in the hilly to mountainous terrain of so much of the country. 1908 - North Island main trunk line completed after 23 years work - the crowning achievement of the "railway age". /records/22903033. They were the second class of electric locomotive to be used on this section of electrification. Based on British and American railway company magazines, it was launched as a journal for the Railways Department’s major customers and 18,000 staff. 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