Re: Arial Ropeways


Peter Robinson <pmwombat@...>
 

Even'in All,
Please allow a newcomer to interject on this thread.

I lived for 20yrs at Moss Vale until moving to Wagga 'bout 4 yrs ago.

The colliery 'behind' Berrima is indeed the Medway Colliery, sharing the
name with the adjacent village. The colliery supplies coal to the Berrima
Cement Works to fire their cement kilns. There is a private railway from
Berrima Junction (about 2km Nth of Moss Vale) on the Main South, to the
colliery. The cement works lies about halfway along the private line. About
15 - 20 yrs ago the track between the cement works and colliery was removed.
Incidentally, prior to pulling up the track, several coal wagons had to be
removed from where they had stood for years on the track behind the houses
in Medway Village. They were pulled out of there in several trips by the
cement work's track maintenance team's Hi-rail Landcruiser. In those days,
my employment required me to make regular inspections of the cement works
line, believe me, the track to the colliery was in no fit state to take the
company's loco.
These wagons were ex NSWR BBW ballast hoppers with hungry boards about 1
metre high welded on the sides and ends to increase the capacity of the
wagons. The limestone quarry near Marulan is the South Marulan Quarry. It is
also served by a private railway from the Main South to a loading point
above the quarry.
The confusion stems from the fact that the junction's name is Medway
Junction (about 3 km Nth of Marulan), usually shortened by railway people to
just 'Medway'. Both of the private lines mentioned (and the colliery and
quarry) are all owned by Boral, formerly Blue Circle Southern Cement. There
was an even earlier company but I can't remember it's name (Southern
Cement??).
When the colliery line was originally opened (late 1800s?, well prior to the
establishment of the cement works), Berrima Junction was known as
Austermere, the name being changed due to confusion with Austinmer on the
Illawarra line.

The Medway Junction - Sth Marulan line runs across private land. It is a bit
of local folklore (may well be true) that when the land owner originally
agreed to having the railway on his land it was be on the consideration that
he be paid one penny per ton carried on the railway. I roughly figure, these
days, about 8000 tonnes of limestone is taken out of there by train per day.
It's not going to make you rich, but would be a nice supplement to one's
income!

Peter Robinson
Wagga Wagga

----- Original Message -----
From: "Eddie Oliver" <eoliver@iprimus.com.au>
To: <LRRSA@yahoogroups.com.au>
Sent: Thursday, November 09, 2006 4:29 PM
Subject: Re: [LRRSA] Arial Ropeways


John Shoebridge wrote:

Medway Colliery nr Marulan *
John, can you clarify the location of this colliery please? There seems
always to be clear identity for Medway Quarry near Marulan and for
Medway Colliery west of Berrima, but I have not worked out where Medway
Colliery near Marulan fits in.

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