P Class withdrawal
The Victorian Railways' 'New Deal for Country Passengers', beginning in October 1981, revolutionised the provision of country passenger services in Victoria. Thirty-five little-used stations were closed, rolling stock utilisation was improved, and new rolling stock introduced. One component of the project involved the rebuilding of thirteen early-model 'flat-top' T Class locomotives into the 'new' P Class, incorporating head end power for the rebuilt former EMU Harris Cars that they would haul in push-pull mode – givingrise to the nickname 'Poor Man's XPT'! Now, these veterans are facing retirement, and in his own inimitable style, RD Signalling Editor (and V/Line driver) David Campbell pays special tribute to these interesting and engaging machines.
SCT's Bromelton and Barnawartha terminals bring growth for rail
The opening in the last 12 months of new SCT Logistics intermodal terminals at Bromelton (49 kilometres south of Brisbane's Acacia Ridge rail terminal) and Barnawartha (near Wodonga in north east Victoria) has brought new business to rail on Australia's interstate network and demonstrated that rail can compete with road if the mix of reliability, distance and appropriate terminal facilities is right, as John Hoyle reports.