Can we Build it! at The Workshops Rail Museum

07 June 2011

The Workshops Rail Museum’s new construction themed holiday program Build it! will explore the ins and outs of building trains from 18 June – 17 July.

The event will have visitors walking in the footsteps of past rail workers as they try their hand at child-sized versions of trades such as tinsmithing, painting and wagon making, constructing locomotives and railway lines using different materials including K’nex, Lego systems and cardboard, and an interactive performance where a giant model locomotive will be assembled.

Director of The Workshops Rail Museum Andrew Moritz said the event is designed to illustrate how many different trades worked together to build the rollingstock and machinery needed to run Queensland’s large railway network.

“Since 1865, the Ipswich Railway Workshops has been the workplace for more than 10,000 skilled tradespeople, from blacksmiths to carriage builders, each contributing in a different way to the process of building locomotives and railway components,” Mr Moritz said.

Build it! features a range of exciting interactive activities that draw on the wealth of knowledge and skills here on site and allows visitors to engage in a hands-on way with the technical side of the rail in Queensland story.”

Visitors can also take a tour of the Heritage Railway Workshops and see the skilled tradespeople of Queensland Rail restoring some of Queensland’s historic steam engines and wooden carriages. Tours leave at regular times throughout the day and enclosed footwear is required.

A highlight of the event will be an opportunity to ride on a live steam locomotive on the Build it! Steam Train on Wednesday 6 July.  Passengers will travel from Roma Street Station in Brisbane to The Workshops Rail Museum, retracing the journey of the early workers’ trains before enjoying the Build it! event and returning to Brisbane by coach. Bookings are essential.

The Workshops Rail Museum is part of the Queensland Museum and is winner of Australian and Queensland Tourism Awards for Heritage and Cultural Tourism.

For further information, steam train bookings and ticket prices, phone (07) 3432 5100 or visit www.theworkshops.qm.qld.gov.au.