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Board Wrap: June 2023

The Board held its third Board meeting for 2023 on Tuesday 6 June 2023, having been deferred one week from its previously scheduled Tuesday 30 May 2023.

New NSW Government

The Board noted the Chair, Deputy Chair and CEO had a first meeting with The Hon. Jo Haylen, Minister for Transport. The Minister expressed her interest in heritage transport and what our organisation does, and the Chair invited her to attend any future THNSW events.

The Board noted that the CEO has also met with The Hon. Jenny Aitchison, Minter for Regional Transport, who has also expressed her interest in heritage transport and is keen to be involved where appropriate.

Visitation and passenger results

Easter and the April school holidays saw just over 8,000 visitors to our NSW Rail Museum with almost 5,900 of those visitors also enjoying a heritage train ride on our Loop Line.

April also saw the return of the Hunter Valley Steamfest, organised by Maitland City Council, the Great Quad Train Race won by our very own Locomotive 3801, and more than 4,500 customers on board our THNSW trains over what was a very successful weekend.

Our own Day Out With Thomas returned in May with well over 12,000 visitors to the NSW Rail Museum and more than 96% enjoying a train ride with Donald. This year we added a sixth day, holding May’s Day Out With Thomas over two consecutive Friday-Sunday three-day weekends, with the quitter Fridays proving popular for those families with smaller, non-school age and special needs children.

The Board also noted the great effort by our Valley Heights team achieving two months back-to-back with more than 500 visitors – another great effort!

Thank you to everyone involved in delivering these very different and great customer events!

Major projects updates

The Board received an update from the CEO on our two major projects.

Chullora Heritage Hub

Works to refurbish and upgrade the Tank Annex are finished, track installation has been completed and the building is looking terrific.

Movement of almost 50 items of rolling stock, associated parts and spares, as well as a range of other small object collection items to be housed in the Tank Annex has commenced with the first train of items to be moved by rail from Broadmeadow to a temporary stabling location within the Chullora site completed.

There will be a delay to moving items into the Tank Annex whilst we finalise the lease arrangements with Transport for NSW, TAHE and Sydney Trains.

The Board thanked those volunteers and staff who had played a part in preparing for and undertaking this first move of collection items.

Loop Line Upgrade Project

For the latest update simply go to the project page.

New financial year

The Board received the first draft of the FY 2023-24 Business Plan. The plan reconfirms our priorities for next financial year, including the development of our next five-year strategic plan and the renewal/extension of the Master Heritage Asset Custody & Management Agreement with the NSW Government.

Next Board meeting

The next Board meeting is scheduled to take place on Tuesday 29 August 2023.

In closing, I again want to thank and congratulate everyone involved in what has been a great April and May. The visitation, passenger and customer satisfaction results we are able to achieve at both our museums and onboard our heritage trains are a testament to the commitment, dedication and ongoing efforts of all our staff and volunteers.

Keep up the great work!

The Hon. Nathan Rees



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