Rattler tracking for govt heritage
NOBODY in authority is yet prepared to say it out loud, but all indicators point to the State Government deciding that Gympie's Mary Valley Rattler is its heritage railway of choice.
After some long delays, years of doubt as to whether it even had a future and no small amount of dissent following the restructure of the venture, the future now looks very bright.
The State has so far promised $2.6 million to get the rolling stock back in action and the track fixed to at least a certain point, with the unspoken promise of whatever money is eventually needed to get the Rattler all the way back to Imbil.
Gympie Regional Council, which played a pivotal role in resurrecting the local icon, this week allocated another $150,000 for "start-up" funding which is expected to get the Rattler back rocking and rolling its way through the Gympie countryside by the middle of next year.
Council CEO Bernard Smith said this week that the MVHR assets had been handed over to the new board which would now put in place the structures to effectively start a new tourism business around the Rattler.