Batlow has mainly been know as an area for agricultural growing for a long time as the high mountain range and cold climate is good for apple growing.
The railway service when in use, was operated using 19 and 48 classes locomotives mainly. The load would consist of a few goods wagons and a guards van on most trips. Some passengers carriages were used on special events or busy periods.
It is a very steep railway line in both directions, either slow and much power required or a lot of braking was needed by the locomotives crews… and on observing this, one can see why it took a long time to climb from Gilmore and made a small load very much necessary.
Batlow’s rail link, was shut down in 1984, as was rest of the Cootamundra-Tumut line when serviced were terminated. There is not much left at the town of the actual railway yard or infrastructure, due to demolition, decay and vandalism. This neglect and damage, is rather sadly a common feature found on many old heritage buildings across NSW.
Batlow station was demolished in 1999, up until then it was a potential attraction but was falling part and a hazard. All that remains today are various platform wall sections. A public sign ironically states that the railway yard was undergoing beauty/regeneration/preservation work…. which included demolishing the station….hardly preserving the history one could assume..
The turntable and water tank were removed and most of the yard is now heavily overgrown. The remaining railway branch line heading down the hill out of town is lifted in place and some parts are now a dirt road. The formation is noticeable due to the cleared trees.
BATLOW APPLE PACKING YARD
The only major relic of the railway era is the large packing yard and on my visit even this area is decaying. The packing yard still has some rail remains going into it under the road and some of the branch line can still remain to be seen as it follows the formation down the hillside opposite the buildings.
Apples are the major crop still grown (as was in the steam/diesel era) but trucking transport industry now move these down the hill and out across Australia, without the glamour that railways once held….