In an era of modern technology, steam trains might have been long forgotten but its legacy and long history will always be part of Australian railways. Yesterday, 10th of June, the Heritage Express™ organized the second day of its three-day exhibition entitled ‘Sydney Great Train Expo’ at the Sydney Terminal part of the Central Station. The expo consists of a steam train return tour from Central Station to Clyde and a public viewing of the interior carriages of the grand express of the 1960’s, the Southern Aurora.
Being on another steam train tour, it gave me in-depth understanding of Australian railways of yesteryears. It showed me an overview of how important steam trains to the Australian community as well as its relevance to the modern and complex railway system of today. The 75-minute voyage of the heritage train in the inner-west suburbs of Sydney paved the way for the old generation to reminisce their experiences of the past while aboard the historic and well-maintained carriages. On the contrary, the younger generations excitedly walk through the narrow lanes of each carriage and intimately listened to their old folks on their stories of what it is in the past, how it has changed for the better, and what their hopes are, for the future.
Comparatively, the public showing of the interiors of the Southern Aurora presented the luxury and elegance of travelling on board its majestic carriages. It reflected the era of the classic 1960’s through its sophisticated and stylish fixtures which were refurbished on each designated passenger coach. This displayed the years when high social status equates to lavish travels on interstate trains which is still very much evident even today, but on the more expensive aviation and cruise ship industry.
Although the era of these trains has past, the colourful and immense history that it depicted makes our generation look forward to a brighter future for the Australian modern railways. Their legacy will continually give us insight on their brilliant past and; with the way we maintain them we can foresee a future for our young generations to appreciate and learn from them at the same time.