Hello to all Farina Volunteers.

 

I hope you are all coping with the Covid restrictions. I especially feel for all our Victorian Volunteers, hang in there.

 

The Farina Restoration Committee has been busy working during this time.

“The project received a grant from the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR) via its Strengthening Rural Communities Program, with funds provided by The McCusker Foundation.”

I am pleased to announce that we have been awarded a $51,672.00 grant from The  Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal to install a 17.2kw solar system with a 25.6 kw battery storage.

 

This will substantially reduce our fuel costs for power generation as we wont have to run the generator as much. We need to move the generator back to the shed and upgrade the sub-main from Tom’s Shed to the Angels Rest sub-board. We hope to complete this task by early November.

 

After some lobbying by Steve Harding, Telstra have announced that they will install a “Small Cell “as part of their Black Spot Programme, this will give 4G phone signal with some access to Broadband within a radius of approx 500m.

We can then roll out QR information points around the town for tourists, let’s hope it makes it to the campground .

 

Steamtown at Peterborough have, generously, loaned us a locomotive for Farina. NSU62 is a diesel electric locomotive that amongst other journeys, was the last engine to travel on the Old Ghan Railway. It was used to pull up the old line back to Marree from the North in the early 80s.

Farina Restoration has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Steamtown and will be part of a Rail Trail with Pitchi Richi and Steamtown. We have applied for a grant to get the locomotive relocated and undercover. We plan to locate it south of the water tank opposite the flat wagon near where the passenger waiting room was. There is a proposal to rebuild the Passenger Waiting room but this is still under discussion.

Weighing in at 60T it is no easy feat, cranes and heavy Haulage are required and come at considerable cost. We have previously applied for some government funding, but did not get this first allocation. We are therefore pursuing other avenues of funding.

Our “Rail Precinct” is very much understated and its time we shone a light on the very reason Farina exists.

Kevin and Anne received 53mm of precious rain on 18th Sept, the main dams are now full and we hope they get some follow up rains now to keep things going.

 

It’s a bit early yet to make any firm decisions, but 2021 is Farina’s ANZAC Dawn Service year. We also have an Official Opening of Patterson’s House.

We will keep you informed once we have some clearer directions.

Keep well.

Tim Paine

Chairman FRG