A small crowd turned out for what should have been a big celebration, the 150 years of Rydal Train Station on Wednesday morning, July 1, 2020.
Packed onto the relatively big platform, Rydal residents waited patiently for the 8.25am Bathurst Bullet to make its grand entrance.
Residents, Sydney Trains NSW officials and the Rydal Village Association all turned out for the special occasion, and despite COVID-19 stopping them from a big celebration, the guests enjoyed their morning with cakes, tea and some party top hats.
Local resident Lorraine Stack's family has been in the area for over 177 years and was around when the first train came through Rydal all those years ago.
"The train used to have many stops at a lot of little stations and Rydal had a very active group of train goers, we were probably the busy body town really," she said.
There used to be stock trains, diesel trains that brought the mail, passenger trains and more, according to Ms Stack.
"One time the engine driver over shot the station and the train guard had to lift us off the platform and onto the train," she said.
"I caught the trains a lot, to go to Bathurst for shopping or to pop into town."
Ms Stack said that the train station an important part in Rydal's history.
"It was really felt when they stopped the amount of trains coming through, because it cut us off from everyone, you could still catch the school bus but a big difference was felt," she said.
Some changes that were made included only having one train track and not two.
"There was two tracks and you would hop on, on one side and off on the other and then just walk across the train tracks but you wouldn't be able to do that these days," she said.
"You could also come and just wave your hat for the driver to stop and they'd stop, they were very good drivers."
Over eight generations of the family have been in Rydal and some even worked to keep the trains going.
"They used to cut coal for the steam trains and that was there main source of income," she said.
Sydney Trains NSW worker Tiffanny Glasgow thanked the Rydal Village Association for their effort in keeping the station alive.
"Thank you also for using the service as it allows us to continue to offer these services in regional areas," she said.
"Here's hoping for another 150 years of Rydal Station, even if we won't be here to enjoy it."
Rydal Station building is the former Stationmaster's residence and little has changed inside since it was built in 1869.
Since the Rydal Village Association have taken over the lease of the building, they have turned it into accommodation for guests wanting to stay somewhere unique.
"We are all just volunteers and want to look after the place we call home," Leann McLaren said.
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