Re: : Rail Fingal NSW


 Last week I mentioned the mystery rail I found in the road bitumen outside the cemetery on the northern side of Fingal Head near the mouth of the Tweed River. So far no conclusive proof the rail was connected with the sand mining known to occur in the area **north** of the Fingal Head town area, although a tramway was involved with the sand mining in the Cudgen area south of Kingscliff as per Jim Longworth’s LR 207 article. Enquiries at the local Tweed Heads museum were inconclusive, although my fellow museum members have also photographed rail near the same cemetery. I marked the cemetery on the following map.

Arthur Knowles and other have mined mineral sands at Fingal Head at various times from late 1930s onwards. My suspicion the rail is not tramway related is reinforced by the fact that so far no person has replied on this group with a Fingal Head listing on any of the tramway loco lists.  

Thus the source of the rail in the bitumen remains a mystery????

On a different topic, the latest LR has Ian McNeil’s article on Breakwater Railways including a brief mention of the Tweed River breakwater (Pre1892 – 1904) on his list. Over the years this yahoogroup has discussed the various Tweed River locations connected with the breakwater operations.   For the sake of new comers I will briefly state there were two quarries for the breakwater rock with the one at Point Danger at the river mouth supplying rock via a horse drawn tramway to the crane wharf marked as the tramway wharf on the following map. The other quarry is marked on the map on the southern side of Fingal Head Township. Also marked is the rock crusher between the loading ramp and the Fingal river wharf.

The Fingal breakwater rock loading ramp for the wharf is on Google Street view at 28°12'10.69"S 153°33'52.77"E in the parkland on the river side of Fingal Rd heading north just before entering the town with the following image from Google Street view

The following Tweed 1935 map has a scale of one inch to the mile with each square 1000 yards. That map scale shows the cemetery to be about 1000 yards north of the breakwater quarry and wharf areas and in fact the cemetery is at the other end of the town.

The rest of the Tweed 1935 map 

Bibliography; Morley IW, 1981, Black sands: a history of the mineral sand mining industry in eastern Australia, UQP. That reference was listed in Jim Longworth’s LR article.


Peter Cokley







Join to automatically receive all group messages.