Table turned without a hitch

Sunday, as the Glenbrook Vintage Railway farewelled their Ja 1250 Diana, as well as opened their recently restored turntable.

The turntable was originally from Papakura, and collected by the team at GVR in 2013. After three years of hard work by the dedicated volunteers, the turntable was ready for action on Sunday 29 January.

Auckland Mayor, and fellow Franklin resident, Phil Goff, and volunteer, George Trow, had the honours of officially opening the turntable in front of a large crowd. This was done by Ww 644 steaming through a ribbon onto the turntable itself, allowing crew to ‘turn’ the magnificent structure for the first time with the Ww 644 aboard.

It was an incredibly poignant day for Mr Goff, whose father, Bruce was also in attendance to watch the display and official opening.

“Trains have been an important part of our upbringing, as Dad, whose is nearly as old as Ww 644, worked on the Railway Workshops before the war. He said he remembers working on Ww 644 too,” he said.

“I was quite the railway enthusiast in my youth, and I must admit, these trains have real character and personality. Would you call these new electric locomotives by a first name? I don’t think so.”

Mr Goff said he would like to congratulate the team behind Glenbrook Vintage Railway who have made it the success that it is today.

“They do a great job of keeping alive this heritage and history in our city. There are 150 volunteers who work tirelessly behind the scenes to help make this possible.”

Mr Goff, and his father, Bruce, were able to enjoy a ride on Ja 1250 Diana, before she goes for a well deserved restoration after 18 years of service.

Warwick Turner, General Manager for GVR, was impressed with the turnout on the day.

“Everyone has worked hard for today. Our volunteers are incredibly hard working, often going home covered in grease which I have no doubt gives the washing machines a good work out. Franklin should be proud of what they have achieved, just as like how we are to have this attraction right here in our backyard.”

On page six, we share another story about one of the original volunteers of GVR, Nigel Murray, who passed away last year, and how Ja 1250 Diana was part of his special day when he married the girl of his dreams.


Auckland Mayor, Phil Goff, and dedicated volunteer/jack-of-all-trades George Trow, had the honour of officially opening the restored turntable at Glenbrook Vintage Railway