Hands-on history at The Workshops Rail Museum's Build it! event

04 June 2012

The history of the North Ipswich Railway Workshops comes alive these school holidays with the fun hands-on Build it! event at The Workshops Rail Museum from 16 June to 15 July 2012.

Director of The Workshops Rail Museum Andrew Moritz said Build it! is a history lesson delivered in a fun and interactive way.

“Visitors get to walk in the foot steps of past workers with interactive activities that let them explore the different trades that were carried out on this historic site,” said Mr Moritz.

“You get a sense of how this place was a constant hive of activity with different trades required to keep the railway running in Queensland.”

‘If it can be made, it can be made at The Workshops’ is the famous catch cry of the iconic Ipswich Railway Workshops, being the workplace of many different skilled tradespeople since 1865.

Young visitors can become honorary apprentices for the day, helping out the senior tradesman and his apprentice in the Big Build performance, or by trying their hand at the different trades and stamping off their very own certificate as they complete each activity.

Visitors can also explore the enormous task of constructing the rail network in Queensland and Australia through the stories of experiences of Torres Strait Islanders, Aboriginal people and Australian South Sea Islanders in the Museum’s latest exhibition I’ve Been Working on the Railway.

Heritage Railway Workshops Tours by a qualified Queensland Rail tradesperson are also available showcasing the engine room that was the place of the State’s rail production for decades.

“You’ll see sparks fly and see the skill required for these jobs, but also notice how the old buildings have aged gracefully, to make the site so iconic for Ipswich and South East Queensland,” said Mr Moritz. Enclosed footwear is required.

To add to the experience of the history of The Workshops and its past workers, on Wednesday 4 July, visitors can take a journey aboard a heritage steam train as many Workshops workers once did. Extra charges apply and bookings essential.

The Workshops Rail Museum, celebrating 10 years this year is winner of Australian and Queensland Tourism Awards for Heritage and Cultural Tourism, and is part of the Queensland Museum network celebrating 150 years in 2012.

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