Queensland Railways - Pictures from the 1950's and 60's.
From the lens of Kim Thurlow
Not a particularly clear image, but
one that shows the spirit of the thing. The Sydney Express southbound
I can remember clearly being very disappointed at the quality when
it finally emerged from the dark room. I had spent a lot of planning on this,
and of course, when the time comes, there is some trepidation. The train is
moving quite fast for our region and times, about 40 mph, down the bank southward
from Harristown toward Alderley Street level (grade) crossing. And I did not
have the luxury of taking frame after frame, as film was not cheap. So I made
do. My Voigtlander camera at this time was a folding bellows 35mm with upper
viewfinder. I thought I was really tech savvy with that camera, with adjustable
f.stop diaghram and top speed of 1/250 of a second. This speed was usually
adquate for Queensland railways photography.
850 was a B18.1/4 built in Walkers shops, Maryborough
in 1936. This class was the precursor to the modernised BB18.1/4,
although same in wheel and frame dimensions. The class number
derives from the cylinder diameter, 18.1/4 inches, of which there
were two outside, and Walschaerts valve gear.
In 1962, I noted one of the class #870, painted a very
light apple green, and I promptly dubbed it "BEAU VERDE".
The usual colour was in my opinion, very similar to GW R green,
or the British railways green of their standard classes of the
Each of the cars on this train was of the open ended verandah or vestibule
type, and you could pass between each car through a gate on the verandah,
over a small overlapping platform from each car. The cars were painted tuscan
red, and were clad in vertical jointed (VJ) timber about 2 inches in width.
I believe that most of them were built in the Ipswich Railway Workshops, and
weighed about 27 tons. The interior panel work in varnished Queensland maple
were, like the rest of the construction, a tribute to the workers who crafted