Letters to the editor

QUESTIONS ASKED: The state opposition’s transport spokesman David Hodgett has taken aim at the Labor government over its handling of the Bendigo rail shutdown.Contempt for commutersBendigo Labor MPs Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan and Maree Edwards, the Level Crossing Removal Authority, V/Line and Public Transport Victoria should hang their collective heads in shame at the appalling treatment for at least 27 days being experienced by Bendigo, Swan Hill and Echuca rail travellers.
Nanjing Night Net

Some current Bendigo, Echuca and Swan Hill line works such as sleeper replacement and rerailing could occur at night between the last train and the first scheduled train the next morning.V/Line could cancel late night Bendigo-bound trains to give contractors a longerwindowto occupy tracks at night. Bridge works could be staged.

Showing where priorities lie for the Andrews Labor Government, Ms Allan ensured Metro trains mostly keep running between October 4 and 30 from Flinders Street to Sunshine.

No such luck for Bendigo, Castlemaine, Kyneton and Elmore residents for at least 27 days with the final stages of level crossing removals near St Albans. Commuters have been shunted into tens of costly, slow coaches for the whole of a trip.This has increased journey times, with a trip at 5.25pm on weekdays for Castlemaine residents who work in Bendigo taking 40 minutes by bus rather than 22 minutes by train.

The plight of Bendigo residents working in Melbourne’s outer suburbs has been ignored.Instead of a 90-minute journey from Bendigo to Watergardens on the 6.08am train, an employee with an early start must leave Bendigo at 4.38am for a Watergardens arrival of 7.30am.Alternatively, he or she could catch a replacement coach to North Melbourne, but that involves a Metro suburban train to Sunshine and then a replacement bus.

Ms Allan did not make any effort to originate and terminate Bendigo, Echuca and Swan Hill line trains at intermediate stations, combined with night or weekend infrastructure works, so that local weekday trains over much of the route to Bendigo plus Swan Hill and Echuca trips could continue to be offered by train for more of October.

The worst affected V/Line passengers are those travelling to or from intermediate stations such as Kangaroo Flat, Castlemaine and Riddells Creek.

Coaches must deviate from major roads to pull in and out of stations.Why is there one standard for Metro train travellers under Labor and a “shove them on a coach”mentality when it comes to country residents using V/Line?

David Hodgett MP, Shadow Minister for Public TransportPyramid Hill celebrationPyramid Hill andDistrict Historical Society andPioneer Machineryheld an open day at Mitchell Park on Sunday, October 16.

MP Peter Walshlaunched the bookSale O Hooroo and Sundries 1890-1899 taken from the Pyramid Hill Advertiser.

They came, they went and what they did in between. With this book we caught up with a lot of people who slipped through the net in Profiles of our Past and Weddings Great & Small 1890-1899 who were part of the community during this time.

With family history being such a big pastime we can now help more people with that little extra towards their family tree. To our knowledge, no other historical society has produced book of this nature.

John ForbesOAM responded to Peter Walsh and if you read John’s bookForbesyyou will know what he was talking about.

Our thanks to all the stall holders, donors of the raffles, owners of classic cars, Bill Boyd for guess the weight of the sheep, Catalina Band who hadthe crowd singing along and last but not least the footy-net ladies for their catering.

If you would like a book, they are available from Pyramid Post & News,or at the museum every Tuesday, or whenever the door is open. The book sells for $30 and includes parish maps.

Margaret Williamson, Pyramid HillThis story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.