Hutt Park Race Trains

The Hutt Park platform, which has not been used for over forty years, is probably not known to the majority of Wellingtonians. This platform sparked my interest in Hutt Park race trains.

There have been three different periods when race trains to Hutt Park were run - Hutt Park Railway Company, steam from Woburn and electric from Woburn. The race trains are documented on this page.

A distinction must be made between the Hutt Park Reserve (including the Race Course) and the two Hutt Park Stations.

My sources are listed here

Hutt Park Races


Some of the links may point to empty boxes. They reflect what I propose to include on this page. I have the information - I just need the motivation to finish the page!

Information about Hutt Park and about race trains can also be found on my Hutt Park Railway Company  page. Clearly I need to rationalise these pages.



Background

From 1885 to 1905 the Hutt Park Railway Company ran race trains to Hutt Park station at the terminus of the railway along the Petone foreshore. Passengers walked across the Hutt River on a pipe bridge. The bridge had been constructed to carry the water pipeline from the Orongorongo catchment to Wellington. In 1906 the Wellington Racing Club moved its meetings to Trentham and the Hutt Park Railway went into decline.

From 1927 until the early 1940s the NZGR ran steam race and picnic trains to Hutt Park on the Gracefield branch.

From 27 February 1960 until 1965 the NZR ran EMU race trains to a new platform at Hutt Park.

G Bennett photographed EMUs at Hutt Park in 1960. Staff & Ticket working had been deleted from the 1943 Rule Book in 1956 and Automatic signalling not installed until 1968, so the EMUs were probably operated under Open Section rules.

A Hutt Park Reserve Timeline is here.




Hutt Park Platform

Hutt park Platform

Hutt Park Platform with the Hutt Workshops on the left and the Hutt Park Holiday Camp and Hutt Park Golf Course on the right. The back of the race course (now closed) was far right beyond the Golf Course. Looking towards Gracefield.

The platform was constructed in 1960 after the Wellington Trotting Club had upgraded its course for evening meetings. The overhead was extended across the Waiwhetu Stream to allow EMUs to berth on the branch and also enter the Workshops siding. Lighting, a Train Control phone, an extension phone and a loudspeaker were installed on the platform.

In early 1960 the District Engineer wrote to the Foreman of Works asking him to build a platform. Wilkins & Davies quoted for the work but were unsuccessful. Downers was unable to quote because of heavy commitments. V.A. Draper quoted for the supply and transport of metal. I do not know which organisation constructed the platform.

The estimated cost was 3000 pounds; the actual cost was 1830 pounds 10 shillings and eleven pence ($60,000 in 2007 dollars).

The platform was first used on Saturday 27th February 1960 and last used about 1965.




Passengers Using Hutt Park Platform

Road Services offer a better service as they set down and pick up near the grandstand rather than at the back of the course.

- Comment in NZR Race Trains file.

Year

Meetings

Passengers

1960

6

4263

60/61

11

3107

61/62

11

1714

62/63

11

1649

63/64

10

1233

64/65

11

1022




Stabling Five Nine-Car EMUs At Hutt Park

When the Hutt Park platform came into use in 1960 five nine-car sets were run to each meeting - three from Wellington, one from Upper Hutt and one from Paekakiriki. Here is how the sets were stabled at Hutt Park.

Stabling five EMUs



Trains From Petone Junction

From 1885 to 1905 the Hutt Park Railway Company conveyed race patrons from Petone Junction to the terminus of the railway along the esplanade. The punters then walked to the race course, crossing the Hutt River on a small pipe-bridge. The pipes carried water from the Orongorongo catchment to Wellington.




Steam Trains To Hutt Park

From at least 1929 until the early 1940s the NZGR ran race and excursion trains to Hutt Park on the Gracefield Branch.




Electric Trains To Hutt Park

From 1960 to 1965 the NZR ran EMUs to a new platform at Hutt Park on the Gracefield Branch.




Last Updated: Wed Sep 19 20:26:13 NZST 2007

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