Callide Valley railway line

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The Callide Valley railway line ran from Rannes to Lawgi in Queensland, Australia. The Callide Valley lies to the south-west of Rockhampton in Central Queensland.

History[edit]

There were grand plans to link Monto by railway with the south, east and north. Links with Maryborough to the south and Gladstone to the east materialised but the northern link terminated at Lawgi some 70 kilometres away. Rannes was already linked by rail to Rockhampton by the Dawson Valley railway line via Mount Morgan and a branch line from Rannes to Lawgi provided access to the rich Callide Valley and justified its construction.

Opening[edit]

The first stage commenced from Rannes, heading south-east to Callide (originally called Callidi) and opened on 3 May 1924. Stops en route were Jooro, Goovigen, Jambin and Argoon. A mixed train ran twice a week from Baralaba, west of Rannes on the Dawson Valley branch, to Callide and connected at Rannes with a service northeast to Rockhampton. A 22 kilometre extension was opened on 24 August 1925 south from Callide via Biloela to Thangool which at the time was the main township between Rannes and Monto.

Train services[edit]

A mixed service took 7 ½ hours for the journey from Thangool to Mount Morgan and a later passenger service took 6 hours from Thangool to Rockhampton. The terminus at Thangool was intended to be temporary and trucking yards were not constructed. However, facilities were provided at Biloela siding and it quickly became the major centre of the district.

Later stages[edit]

Construction beyond Thangool was halted in August 1926 and resumed during the depression as an employment measure. The third and final stage took the line a further 14 kilometres via Mt Scoria to Lawgi. Proposed construction to Monto did not eventuate and isolated Lawgi became the terminus on 19 September 1932. The Lawgi station mistress was withdrawn in 1952 and the section to Thangool was closed on 1 July 1955. The Thangool to Biloela section closed on 31 January 1988 and Biloela became the railhead. The line between Biloela and Lawgi was taken up. It remains in place between Rannes and Biloela, though only the section between Dakenba and Earlsfield is in service.

Timeline[edit]

  • Rannes-Callide, 46km, opened 3 May 1924
  • Callide-Biloela-Thangool, 22km, opened 24 August 1925
  • Thangool-Lawgi, 14km, opened 19 September 1932
  • Dakenba-Callide Coalfields branch, 15km, opened 9 November 1953
  • Lawgi-Thangool closed 1 July 1955
  • Thangool-Biloela, 11km, closed 31 January 1988
  • Biloela-Dakenba currently out of service
  • Callide Coalfields-Dakenba-Earlsfield (junction with the Moura Short Line) in active service for coal traffic
  • Koorngoo-Rannes, 24km, closed ~1999
  • Earlsfield-Koorngoo available for seasonal grain haulage

Moura Short Line[edit]

In 1968 the Moura Short Line was opened to transport coal from the Callide and Moura mines to Gladstone port.[1] The line crosses the Callide branch line between Jambin and Callide at Earlsfield Junction and thus links Biloela with Gladstone in lieu of its previous link to Rockhampton.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Moura Line Archived 14 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine.

Works cited

  • "Triumph of Narrow Gauge: A History of Queensland Railways" by John Kerr 1990 Boolarong Press, Brisbane

External links[edit]