Milk, milk train, poetry – Part Three

We had the poetry yesterday:

Gaslight and milk-cans. Of Rapptown I recall nothing else.

Now back to the milk train. Would you believe that someone has actually made a digital simulation of it in its C32 heyday?


And here are a couple of the real thing, or parts thereof.


At Ultimo 1958

02 - Milk - D C Jones

That must be some time after the later 1950s because of the diesel engine and the Victorian car just behind the engine, but otherwise it is our milk train. Ah…

10 things trains once carried

I am by no means nostalgic but I do have a great fear of any enterprise which deliberately specialises or narrows its focus to a very small range of products.
And so while it is true that along the eastern seaboard of Australia the number of rail operators is increasing, traffic volumes are continuing to grow and new rail lines are being planned, I hold concerns for the long term viability of the larger part of the Australian rail freight industry. These concerns are based on the loss of traffic sources – mostly as a deliberate decision not to compete against road freight.

Anyway, this is neither the time or place to wax on about about such things; lets take a look at 10 commodities the railways no longer carry in NSW…

2 – Bulk milk

Probably thanks to all those soy milk drinkers who just didn’t exist in the 1970s, we no longer have beaut little trains like the afternoon milko running on the south coast. Here is 48120 doing the honours on one such train during that decade.

A serious note there. I also see that a family dairy business, Clover Hill Dairies, liked the first post in this set. There is a serious note there too for 2013:

In my post yesterday cheekily titled Shame on you Woolworths set to sell sex toys in the milk isle I talked about my dream for a new look agriculture that saw farmers level the supply chain playing field, working side by side with supply chain partners who showed each other equal respect and our farmers gaining the knowledge and skills sets to allow them to extract real value from supply chain. 

I don’t know how many farmers feel like me and I hope the fact that when I write a post that has a dig at Coles is 15 times more popular with my readers than a post that actually talks about working on real solutions to get farmers out of this nightmare paradigm where all the power lies at the top of the supply chain is not indicative of the lack of interest in my sector in driving real change

Whilst I might get disillusioned from time to time by lack of positive feedback, it wont stop me spending the rest of my days in paradise working towards my goal of supply chain equality driven by the farmers themselves not this energy wasting dream of white knights with silver bullets …

We have come a long way, not all of it good, from the days when I personally knew the cow!

Now a couple of stories from the Kiama Independent


Worthy of Hercule Poirot! Obviously too the 1905 milk train was a mixed passenger and goods affair. The Tatura Tragedy was a great sensation in 1905. Both items link to Trove.


It appears too that a few years earlier fiendish Boer agents targeted our milk train with devilish trained snakes!  On the other hand I suspect the Kiama Independent reporter, or the Mercury one, or indeed Mr Rieder, may have been just a little tongue in cheek:


And the story goes on:

…after about 15 minutes’  desperate fighting, a well-directed blow dislocated his snakeship’s spinal column, and left him at the mercy of his antagonists who speedily put an end to his sufferings. A general sense of relief was afforded to all present, who now gathered around to have a look at the vanquished foe. A great many speculations were indulged in as to how the snake came to be  on the station, but the only feasible one was that ventured by Mr.  Rieder, manager of the refreshment  room (who is a naturalist of some standing), viz , that it was one of Cronje’s spies.  However that may be, it is well the reptile was destroyed, as it is certainly not a pleasant thought that where so many people are continually assembled,  such dangerous and unwelcome visitors could make their appearance.