Whether you’re a railway or hotel hobbyist, interested in social history, architecture, a local historian, researcher or genealogist you will find Scott Whitaker’s author talk Railway Hotels of Australia fascinating and informative, at Werris Creek library, Wednesday 7 December at 3.30pm.
Scott Whitaker has journeyed around Australia investigating the life of the Railway Hotel, beginning with his multipart work, Volume One – Railway Hotels of Victoria, and now the newly released Volume Two – Railway Hotels of New South Wales. Scott is a railway enthusiast and part-time historian and the book details the history of every Railway Hotel that trades, or once traded in New South Wales.
Author Scott Whitaker in the cab of a steam locomotive. In addition to detailing the history of the local Railway Hotels, Scott’s talk will cover the coming of the railway, the social development of regional NSW and researching tips.
In the early days, Railway Hotels, along with Terminus, Junction and Station Hotels, were quickly established to service the railway construction workers, or navvies. Some publicans stayed in the new town, others moved on with the navvies to the next camp. Some existing hotels were renamed to celebrate the arrival of the railway, and some were moved to a new site nearer the railway station. Inevitably, the Railway Hotel was the haunt of many of the local railway workforce.
The book, 312 pages in length, contains a wealth of information on the history of railways in New South Wales, and explores the social, economic and political themes that helped to shape the state. It contains hundreds of historic and contemporary images on high quality art paper, and includes a range of advertisements and anecdotes that add interest and establish the mood of the era.
Everyone is welcome to come along and meet Scott and to enjoy afternoon tea provided by the Friends of Werris Creek Library.
It is only fitting that the North West’s major railway centre, Werris Creek, has its own Railway Hotel.