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Unique opportunity to explore railway heritage at Eveleigh

Be transported to a bygone era of steam trains and handmade machinery at Australian Technology Park’s (ATP) Heritage Community Days.Richard Butcher

As part of the National Trust’s Heritage Festival, ATP is inviting the community to experience the unique industrial heritage of the Eveleigh Railway Yards.

On Friday, 16 and Saturday, 17 May 2014 former Eveleigh Railyard Engineer, Richard Butcher will be joined by other volunteers to take the public on tours of the reorganised Blacksmith’s Workshop, talk about the site’s origins and significance for Aboriginal people and give a first-hand account of what the workshops used to be like.

During the tour people will have the chance to see modern-day blacksmiths from Wrought Artworks using traditional machinery and tools. Artwork from Industrial Artist, Jane Bennett, who has painted pieces of the Blacksmiths’ Workshop, will also be on display.

There will be train displays courtesy of ATP tenant 3801 Ltd where the whole family will be welcomed aboard to explore restored train carriages and engines dating from the 1930s. Devonshire tea will be served in the buffet car surrounded by art deco train memorabilia and décor.

From 1886 until the 1980s, when the Park was still the Eveleigh Railway Yards and one of Australia’s largest industrial complexes, the Blacksmith’s Workshop produced equipment, tools and parts for the maintenance and manufacture of steam locomotives in Australia.

The workshop has been kept predominately in its original state and is easily accessible to the public on the doorstep of Redfern Station.

“We want to show people this magnificent area where they can see what the workshop was like during its heyday. We have maintained the Blacksmith’s Workshop’s original character and integrated modern, viable uses at ATP that provide an opportunity for activities such as these Community Days,” said Duncan Read, General Manager of ATP.3801 Moss Vale Carriage

Richard Butcher has been giving public tours of the area since the improvement works were finished. He worked at the Yards in the 1950s and 60s and says it is vital that this area be maintained and made available to the public as it is such an important part of Sydney’s history.

“The Eveleigh Rail Yards was one of the largest of its kind and produced some of the finest steam locomotives in the world. This space represents a unique part of Sydney and Australia’s industrial heritage and it is fantastic that the public can now access and be involved in it,” said Mr Butcher.

Tours will run daily from the Blacksmith’s Workshop at 10am, 12pm and 2pm.

For more information visit www.atp.com.au/heritage-community-days or call (02) 9209 4162.

Watch to below clip to get a snapshot into ATP's rail heritage

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