BUDERIM PALMWOODS HERITAGE TRAMWAY INC. (BPHTI)
Thank you for visiting the Buderim Website. This old site is now superseded! You will be automatically transferred in a few seconds. We trust you will enjoy the new Buderim website.
The Buderim to Palmwoods tramway (really a railway) was built to service the needs of the farmers and residents of Buderim & district. It enabled farm produce, fruit, timber etc to access Brisbane via the main-line at Palmwoods. The first tram ran in 1914 and the last in 1935. Buderim and district in the early 1900s was a thriving community. Its farms were producing plenty of high quality fruit and timber.
Roads were poor and transport to Woombye - the main centre of that time - relied on horses, wagons and bullocks. Shipping services through rivers and creeks to Maroochy ports, with sand-bar problems, was a variable which threatened perishable produce. There was a great need for effective and reliable transport to the main Queensland Rail train line and thus access to the Brisbane markets. The alternative tramway routes considered from 1903 onwards were Buderim/Palmwoods or Buderim/Woombye. Buderim/Palmwoods was settled on by 1911 and the line was open and began operating on the 1st of December 1914, with the official opening later in 1915. The line was closed in 1935.
The Buderim-Palmwoods Heritage Tramway Inc was formed in 2003 following foundation work done by the Buderim Historical Society over the preceding ten or so years. It consists of a group of volunteers working on two major projects. The first project is the rehabilitation of part of the old track as a heritage walking track , and the second project is the cosmetic restoration of the original Krauss locomotive that ran on the line for most of the time the line was open.
The group is always looking for new members. If you are interested in becoming a member, or you would like further information, the President of the group, Charles Thurgood, can be contacted by phoning (07) 5450 1218. To become a Member click here for Application!
The tramway had two steam locomotives, the original being a German built Krauss 0-6-2, plus an American Shay geared loco built in 1915.
After closure, the Krauss was sold to Bingera Sugar Mill at Bundaberg, and regauged to 24" by Walkers of Maryborough to suit the sugar mill lines. It was later owned by narrow gauge steam enthusiast Mike Loveday, and spent some time in storage at the Australian Narrow Gauge Railway Museum at Woodford. The BPHTI acquired it from the next owner, G.Chapman, in 2004, in order to restore it for public display in accordance with our heritage related objectives.
The Shay locomotive was dismantled, and parts sold for use on sugar mill Shays. The boiler, and possibly the frame, were buried in the embankment of the Palmwoods railway station when the north coast line was electrified in early 1988. The steam dome and boiler top are visible, but QR have declined to excavate it due to its proximity to the overhead lines.
Between 2005 and 2010, BPHTI volunteers cosmetically restored the Krauss in order to put it on display in the vicinity of the original terminal station in the centre of Buderim. We plan to have a building to protect the locomotive, and to house memorabilia, photos, maps, and explanatory posters.
Since starting the Restoration, the cab and bunker have been repaired, and new side tanks built and installed. Badly corroded parts of the frame have been replaced, holes in the footplate patched, and a new cab floor fitted. The photo above shows the boiler being lagged with wooden battens prior to receiving a new boiler wrapper. Later tasks entailed manufacture of a diamond stack, cowcatcher, oil headlight, and many cab fittings. Most of these had been removed and lost since service on the Tramway ceased in 1936. A really major task for us was the manufacture and fitting of new connecting and coupling rods, all in steel.
Restoration of sheet metal work required dismantling, cleaning of rust, repair or replacement of the worst affected parts, and finally repainting. We had a capable and enthusiastic group of volunteers, and support from several local businesses.
While the restoration is now substantially complete, we still need to undertake ongoing maintenance work until secure accommodation is made available. If you would like to assist us in this project, either as a volunteer, or by donating money or services, please call the Project Coordinator, Mike Austin, on (07) 5445 3435, or his deputy, Doug Benckendorff, on (07) 5445 4683.
A more detailed coverage of progress of the restoration work is available on the Website www.qldrailheritage.com. Look under museums etc, then for the link to Buderim-Palmwoods Heritage Tramway Inc.