“It’s Always Spring in an air conditioned train”
One of the nicest things about owning a piece of history is the way that other people have a connection to it. So many of our guests have shared their stories about the Southern Aurora with us, whether they travelled by her as a child or young adult. Some guests worked on the Southern Aurora or worked for NSW Government Railways and some guests watched as she passed in the dead of night.
Recently, a guest brought some travel posters that they had collected to the train (it was their second tour with us!) and gifted them to us. Additionally, one of our wonderful Train Drivers found a treasure trove of NSW Government Railways documents in his Father’s collection. Not to mention the fabulous gift given to us by John from LVR of the ‘Finest Train in the World’ poster.
‘Finest Train in the World’ poster
We thought it would be a great opportunity to share them with you here. It might jog your memories of holidays past!
The travel posters and brochures developed by the NSW Government Railways outlines the different trains travellers could use at the time. They outline the Sydney-Brisbane Limited Express; the Intercapital Daylight; the Spirit of Progress; and of course the Southern Aurora.
One brochure stated:
“Although reservations are necessary for travel on air-conditioned trains, they may be made up to 12 months in advance of travel interstate and generally up to one month in advance of travel within the State.”
Travellers were encouraged to call the Car Diagram Bureau (!) for reservations or inquire at any railway station or railway travel agency.
These brochures are full of interesting snippets of information. One brochure states, for example, that with the introduction of the Southern Aurora and Spirit of Progress to the standard gauge, there were 37 regular daily services (Mondays to Saturdays) with 10 on Sundays. Doesn’t that seem like a lot of trips to and from Sydney?
Another outlines that “The Railway Travel Bureau is at your service for rail bookings, itinerary planning, accommodation arrangements and all inquiries concerning rail travel anywhere in Australia.” What a great service, even though this bureau isn’t around any longer, so many people still like to use travel agents to book their holidays.
Not only do we love the way that train travel is described in these brochures – they also look fabulous. We can definitely see our train depicted in these stylised drawings. The Southern Aurora carriages behind the streamliner locomotives look just as amazing in the drawings as they do in real life.
These posters and brochures continue to enhance our connection to the past and they have inspired us to share the nostalgia with you. We hope that you have enjoyed looking at them as much as we did.
In the words of the NSW Government Railways:
“There are other ways of travelling, to be sure, some speedier, some far more costly – but for comfort, style, economy and safety, travel by air-conditioned train is, and will remain, the best of them all.”