FRIENDS OF THE OPAPA RAILWAY STATION.
8 Tasman Street,
21st. March 2000.
Councillor C. Bowers.
Hastings District Council,
Dear Mrs. Bowers.
Thank you for your letter, & looking forward to meeting Claire McCormack from the council & will be happy to work with her & give what imformation [information] that the department requiries [requires].
On the 11th.March, the group had a B.B.Q. followed by the A.G.M. We then had a interesting guest speaker, Don Selby of P.O. Box 67 Pahiatua, who is a railcar enthuslast [enthusiast]. He is in partnership-owner of a “Standard” railcar which is in running order, waiting to be “Certified” by Transrail [TranzRail] to allow the car to be used on their system, also Don has a interest in what is known as the Wairarapa railcar being restored at Pahiatua that was designed to travel over the Rimuatuka [Rimutaka] incline. This is the only one left out of 8 cars.
In the 1950-60s era N.Z.R. introduced what was known as a 88 seater articulated twin set, (painted red). cars, which serviced the H.B. line for many years. In fact the Gis-Wtgn & the Wtgn-Gis services used to cross over at Opapa on their daily run. About 3Km. north of Otane is the half way point between Gisborne & Wellington. There were 35 purchased by N.Z.R. & sadly there is only one left which is in Auckland. Towards the end of their self propelled life, the motors were removed & were repainted a light green & become known as the “Grasshopper” & were towed by a diesel locomotive.
The one left, RM133, (were numbered from RM100-34) is in good condition now has a new held over owner in the name of Don at the time of writing. A trust has or about to be registered to preserve this unit. The request is to shift it to Opapa Railway Station in conjunction with “Friends of the Opapa Railway Station” group.
I feel as writer, this new attraction will be a great benefit to Opapa-Te Aute area, Hastings District Council & to the Historcial [Historical] Heritage group, in the veiw [view] to upgrade & improve historical amenities.
As further developments occur, I will kept you posted. We may be able to get the local papers for photographs & a scrip [script] on its arrival.