Our Railway

Our Railway

A Story Spanning All Six States…

The Bellarine Railway is proudly home to one of the most diverse collections of railway equipment in the country.

From our humble beginnings as the Belmont Common railway in 1968, we have bought together 13 steam locomotives, five diesel locomotives, two diesel railcars, and a fascinating assortment of carriages and wagons, spanning the breadth of Australia’s narrow gauge railway system.

We are proud of what our railway has become, and it is only through the tireless work of countless Geelong Steam Preservation Society volunteers over the last 55 years, that we are able to display such an intriguing collection. The work of these members has provided us with the framework to not only display our countries railway heritage, but give it a new lease on life in the 21st century.

Our Collection

The Bellarine Railway is home to one of the most diverse collections of locomotives and carriages in Australia. The motive power collection comprises of 13 steam locomotives, five diesel locomotives and two diesel railcars. 

Our History

The 16km heritage steam railway you see today tells a story far different than the origins of the Geelong Steam Preservation Society. 1968 saw the beginnings of the society at a completely different location, The Belmont Common Railway.

Belmont Common Railway

August 30th, 1968 saw ex-Fyansford Cement Works steam locomotive No6 delivered to the Belmont Common Railway depot in Geelong – A disused aircraft hangar, and stretch of track long enough to hold No6, and the larger No4, which arrived a few weeks later. 

The members decided that it would be more interesting to steam up the locos and run them up and down a short track. Consequently, a 100 yard length of track was laid, and No.6 began hauling passengers. Regular running on the line began in October 1969 with seats being fitted to a well wagon donated by the cement works. 

Bellarine Peninsula Railway

1979 saw the opening of what we now know as the Bellarine Railway, with steam locomotive M6 and a small selection of carriages delivered to the Queenscliff to Drysdale railway line.

Straight off the boat and to the new home-base, M6 started a long road of acquisitions for the GSPS, with further Tasmanain Rollingstock shipped over in subsequent years, and two Western Australian Locomotives trucked over in the form of V1209 and S547.

Queenscliff Loco Shed 1977, G Winkler photo

The Line

The Bellarine Railway itself comprises of a 16km stretch of ex-Victorian Railways branch line, converted from 5ft 3in, to 3ft 6in narrow gauge.

There are five stations on our line, and a few other areas of interest along the way.

Queenscliff Station is a quiet rail yard these days, with no running trains stabling here overnight. The current projects of the Queenscliff Workshops volunteer work group are housed in a small compound at the eastern end of the yard.

Swan Bay Station is a short platform of only three carriages in length, and is a stopping place of our heritage trains only by request.

Lakers Siding is the hub of our heritage operations, with a large rolling stock shed, island platform, and safe working office all situated within the yard limits.

Suma Park features short platform and garden area, and is a stopping place for chartered trains, and The Blues Train on a Saturday Night.

Drysdale has expanded in recent years, with a long platform and booking office, water tower, and a 125m long shed for the stabling of The Q Train carriages and engines.