Located at the 300.73km marker in the upper mid Hunter Valley of NSW is Aberdeen railway station fitting in between Muswellbrook and Scone. It has changed in its 142year history ….mainly for the worst from an historical perspective with near full removal of all its original infrastructure unlike other rural NSW stations.
The station was opened in October 1870 as the newest station as the extension of the line known as the Main North Line expanded towards the looming Liverpool ranges.
The station was built upon a single platform which had a sand base. The station building was constructed from brick and wood with a waiting room, station master/ticket office, 2 fireplaces and a small good shed on the platform. The usual male and female toilets were also provided. The original station had 5 wood light poles mounted on the platform.
Aberdeen was serviced more frequently in the past, than it is nowadays for both passenger and freight services. Nowadays the only passenger stops are the few services heading into the Hunter or coming back to Sydney.
The movement of goods by railway in the past coming out of Aberdeen included many local produces which are now are sent by trucks instead. Located near the railway was the Aberdeen Meat Works which for over 100years had been the largest beef and lamb export company in Australia until its closed in 1999. Many of their end products went to the markets and overseas markets by train. Additionally found across from the railway station and also on the edge of town outskirts are the remains of the once productive and busy butter factory and flour mill which both used trains for the movements of their products around the state.
With minimal services provided by NSW Government, the station will continue to just see minor use. The station platform sign will hopefully remain preserved into the future.
Here is a link to the station in the 1900s showing a good closeup detailed view of the building layout.
Here we see a photo of it in December 1958 – courtesy of NSW State Records. Compare this with the photo below taken 53years later….
Here we see a very similar view from November 2011 courtesy of Mr Twig – with a very different station layout – all the original style buildings demolished and replaced with modern stark shelter designs. At least one positive is found still – one of the original platform signs remains standing in centre of platform.