Southern Downs Steam Railway team Len Walker, John Brady, Jan Walker, John Moore, Bob Keogh, Babes Mcrae, John Mcrae and Jan Winsor strive to get back on track.
Southern Downs Steam Railway team Len Walker, John Brady, Jan Walker, John Moore, Bob Keogh, Babes Mcrae, John Mcrae and Jan Winsor strive to get back on track. Georja Ryan

Back on track in the new year

IT has been a quiet couple of months for the Southern Downs Steam Railway as trains remained docked at the station, but they should be back on track early next year.

The travel was brought to a halt in November after two staff resigned unexpectedly.

Committee member Bob Keogh said the change in staff meant trains had to stop operating.

"There was a sudden resignation of two key operational personnel which was unexpected," Mr Keogh said.

"They held key roles on the main lines, so we unfortunately had to cancel the trains in November and December."

Replacing staff proved to be a timely task, with regulator Queensland Transport having to approve replacements.

Mr Keogh said they were working to get trains back in operation as quickly as they could.

"To solve the problem, we were lucky enough to obtain another two people to allow us to start running, hopefully in January, if not February at the latest," he said.

"Queensland Transport has to OK the personnel and their qualifications and this is being done now so once that happens we'll be up and running."

Due to the bustle of the Christmas period, Mr Keogh said the approval of their new staff had taken some time and the Southern Downs Steam Railway has apologised for the inconvenience.

"We were very sorry and quite upset we couldn't run the trains, but it was out of our control," Mr Keogh said.

The railway service hopes to have more trains running in the new year.

With a timetable catering for two train trips a month, the service hopes to incorporate school excursions into their timetable in the near future.

For more information visit the Southern Downs Steam Railway's website.


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