Huntly railway station, Waikato

Huntly Railway Station is on the North Island Main Trunk line and the Awaroa Branch in the town of Huntly in the Waikato District of New Zealand, 65 mi (105 km) south of Auckland.[2] It is 7.31 km (4.54 mi) north of Taupiri and 2.78 km (1.73 mi) south of Kimihia.[3]

Huntly Railway Station
Huntly, New Zealand.jpg
Huntly station, footbridge and road/rail bridge in 1949
General information
LocationHuntly
New Zealand
Coordinates37°33′36″S 175°09′36″E / 37.56000°S 175.16000°E / -37.56000; 175.16000Coordinates: 37°33′36″S 175°09′36″E / 37.56000°S 175.16000°E / -37.56000; 175.16000
Elevation13 m (43 ft)
Owned byKiwiRail Network
Line(s)North Island Main Trunk
DistanceWellington 573.76 km (356.52 mi)
Tracksdouble track
from 4 December 1938 to south
from 27 August 1939 to north[1]
History
Opened13 August 1877 original
6 April 2021
Closed10 April 2005
Rebuilt1939, 2021
Previous namesRuawaro, Huntley
Services
Preceding station KiwiRail Following station
Papakura
Terminus
Te Huia Rotokauri
Historical railways
Kimihia
Line open, station closed
towards Britomart
North Island Main Trunk Taupiri
Line open, station closed
towards Wellington

HistoryEdit

The station opened on 13 August 1877,[4] originally as Huntley Lodge or Ruawaro c1878,[5] and Huntley from 1879[6] up to 1882,[2] though all 3 names had been used locally since at least 1877.[7] On 21 May 1972 the station was closed.[8]

The station was enlarged in 1893.[9] It had a Class 4 station building, described, in 1902, as built of wood and iron, with, "a large waiting room, ladies' waiting room, a lamp and luggage room, and the post and telegraph office. There is also a goods shed, and an engine and coaling shed for the engine. About ten trains daily pass through the station, and the staff consists of five hands, besides the stationmaster."[10]

Traffic grew steadily (see graph and table below) so, in March 1920, the Town Board set out the need for a larger station. Requests were dismissed until, on 2 July 1936,[11] the First Labour Government's new Minister of Railways said that provided the Government was re elected, a new station building would be provided.[12]

 
tickets and season tickets sold at Huntly 1881–1950 (derived from figures in table). The growth in season tickets in the 1920s was probably due to opening of mines on the Awaroa Branch, on which it was said in 1928 that, "About 350 miners who are able to take advantage of the cheap workmen's tickets issued by the Railway Department travel daily to and from their work at the mines."[13]
year tickets season tickets staff
1881 1,960 0 2[14]
1882 1,501 0 2[15]
1883 1,305 0 2[16]
1884 1,681 0 2[17]
1885 2,103 2 3[18]
1886 2,144 2 3[19]
1887 2,547 0 3[20]
1888
1889 2,241 0 3[21]
1890 2,430 0 3[22]
1891 2,537 0 3[23]
1892 2,351 0 4[24]
1893 2,133 0 5[25]
1894 2,352 0 4[26]
1895 2,832 0 4[27]
1896 2,699 23 4[28]
1897 2,767 49 4[29]
1898 3,643 64 5[30]
1899 4,019 37 5[31]
1900 3,949 30 5[32]
1901
1902 6,121 46 7[33]
1903 6,935 37 6[34]
1904 7,626 36 6[35]
1905 8,449 50 6[36]
1906 8,587 94 7[37]
1907 9,180 57 6[38]
1908 11,168 45 7[39]
1909 11,827 54 7[40]
1910 14,759 54 8[41]
1911 16,121 76 9[42]
1912 17,396 83 9[43]
1913 18,463 37 11[44]
1914 20,343 40 [45]
1915 23,642 42 [46]
1916 24,392 49 [47]
1917 33,446 51 [48]
1918 36,993 1,168 [49]
1919 37,117 4,583 [50]
1920 40,971 6,295 [51]
1921 46,094 7,007 [52]
1922 51,400 8,111 [53]
1923 55,492 8,727 [54]
1924 57,979 9,724 [55]
1925 56,952 17,927 [56]
1926 47,221 20,492 [57]
1927 43,479 19,359 [58]
1928 41,795 22,041 [59]
1929 36,984 20,992 [60]
1930 34,543 16,921 [61]
1931 62,198 20,240 [62]
1932 56,787 18,883 [63]
1933 54,048 8,605 [64]
1934 58,268 7,996 [65]
1935 63,608 10,043 [66]
1936 64,606 11,825 [67]
1937 66,635 12,672 [68]
1938 63,874 12,701 [69]
1939 61,019 12,483 [70]
1940 61,890 12,532 [71]
1941 78,221 15,571 [72]
1942 93,519 15,004 [73]
1943 110,948 16,433 [74]
1944 122,353 16,882 [75]
1945 108,291 16,417 [76]
1946 111,646 16,489 [77]
1947 95,852 15,216 [78]
1948 79,727 14,663 [79]
1949 74,154 14,610 [80]
1950 73,041 15,182 [81]

By 1925 there were 13 staff and 3 locomotives at Huntly engine shed.[82]

1939 stationEdit

The new station opened on 28 May 1939, with Stationmaster, waiting, porters and parcels rooms. A 55 lever electric frame[11] operated the newly doubled lines and extended yard.[83] The old station was demolished to allow a platform extension.[11]

Freight was also growing. In 1919 the Chief Traffic Manager reported that there was insufficient room and by 1924 the growth of coal mining had increased business a further 25%. A plan was made to enlarge the yard and move it south of the Awaroa Branch.[84]

Closure and removalEdit

In 1993 Huntly Lions Club repainted the station[11] and the 1939 footbridge at the north end of the platform was moved to Helensville, though it couldn't be used, as too few parts survived for it to be safe.[85] It had been raised to allow the SH1 bypass to be built in 1978[86] on the site of 2 shunting lines. Access was then only from Rayners Rd.[11]

The Overlander continued to call at Huntly until 2005.[87]

In 2008 the 1939 building was moved as part of plans to shift Waikato Coalfields Museum to Lake Puketirini (former Weavers opencast coal mine),[88] the most vandalised park in the district.[89] The museum plan was further discussed in 2017.[90] In 2021 it was proposed that the building be moved back to the station for use as a museum and by Te Huia passengers.[91]

ReopeningEdit

Originally on an island platform between the up and down lines, the replacement station was on a siding, so trains travelled at "yard" speed, and northbound trains had to cross over the southbound track.[citation needed]

$960,000 was to be spent to renovate the station for the new Te Huia service, originally promised for 2019,[92] then delayed to March 2020,[93] then 3 August 2020[94][95] and, finally, Tuesday 6 April 2021.[96]

The shelter and platform needed upgrading plus "park-and-ride" facilities and a pedestrian overbridge to the town centre.[97] Expenditure was increased by $3,279,495 in 2019, to provide points and extend the single platform to 140 m (460 ft).[98][99] By October 2020, the new shelter was largely complete, and the carpark was to be finished in November.[100]

The indicative start-up service timetable is:[101]

Station
Hamilton 5:54 6:33 Britomart 16:30 17:30
The Base 6:02 6:41 Papakura 17:18 18:18
Huntly 6:25 7:04 17:27 18:27
Papakura 7:22 8:01 Huntly 18:23 19:28
7:34 8:12 The Base 18:45 19:50
Britomart 8:24 9:04 Hamilton 18:52 19:57

Huntly was named after Huntly in Aberdeenshire, Scotland.

GalleryEdit

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit

Timetables

Photos