Spirit of the West (train)

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Spirit of the West
K205 locomotive leading the Spirit of the West train down the Avon Valley (9 April 2006).jpg
K205 leads the Spirit of the West down the Avon Valley in April 2006
Overview
Service type Restaurant train
Status Ceased
First service 18 October 2002
Last service 31 May 2008
Former operator(s) South Spur Rail Services
Route
Start East Perth
End Leighton
West Toodyay

The Spirit of the West was a restaurant train that operated out of Perth, Western Australia. It was the brainchild of South Spur Rail Services (SSRS) and began using four restored coaches hired from the Australian Railway Historical Society (ARHS) and a power car purchased from the ARHS and restored to running condition and modified by SSRS.[1]

The train operated under the old Midland Railway Company name, an offshoot of South Spur Rail Services.

The train ran regular Sunday lunch and Saturday dinner trips from East Perth into the Avon Valley, running to West Toodyay and return.

Evening services to Leighton and return via Fremantle were halted due to vandalism on the Forrestfield to Cockburn section of the railway line.

The service received two Gold Plate awards for "Best Tourist Restaurant".

Duration[edit]

The first revenue service was on 18 October 2002. The Spirit of the West restaurant train ceased operation on 31 May 2008.

Rollingstock[edit]

The consist of the train usually involved a combination of the following:

SOTW K205.jpg K205 South Spur Rail Services locomotive painted in maroon SOTW livery, built by English Electric, Rocklea October 1966
SOTW HRGA96L.jpg HRGA96L Power van, built in West Germany entered service with Commonwealth Railways 15/11/1952. Purchased by South Spur Rail Services mid 2002. http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/r_hrga.html#hrga96
SOTW 26AF.jpg 26AF Timber lounge car named the "Heritage Carriage", Built at Port Augusta Workshops on the frame of RA688 flat wagon South Australia entering Commonwealth Railways service 31/10/1917, donated in 1995 and restored by the ARHS http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/r_af.html#af26
SOTW D20.jpg D20 Dining carriage named the "Colonial Carriage", built in South Australia 1918, donated in 1995 and restored by the ARHS http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/r_d.html#d20
SOTW DD136F.jpg DD136F ex Murraylander kitchen/dining car named the "Regency Carriage", built by Commonwealth Engineering circa 1964 http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/r_dd.html#dd136
SOTW 1BRBF.jpg 1BRBF Sleeping carriage named the "Federation Carriage", the first Commonwealth Railways carriage, built in New South Wales circa 1915 http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/r_abp.html#abp1
SOTW AFB137V.jpg AFB137V ex Australian Railroad Group corporate coach built circa 1952, named the "Imperial Carriage" and used for cocktail and corporate functions http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/r_afb.html#afb137
SOTW EI84.jpg EI84 observation, sleeper car ex Australian Railroad Group, built circa 1952 and named the "Regal Carriage" http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/r_arf.html#arf84

Due to the occasional motive power shortage, the Spirit of the West was sometimes hauled by another locomotive. Such rare workings included Pacific National's Kewdale shunter 8112, Specialised Container Transports Forrestfield shunter H5, and other locomotives from the South Spur Rail fleet: D48, D49, K206, K210, KA212. D48 was painted similar to K205.[2]

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • May, Andrew and Gray, Bill. A History of WAGR Passenger Carriages. Perth:The Author, 2006. ISBN 0-646-45902-3

External links[edit]