The railways have played a central role in the daily experiences of generations of Victorians. For much of the last 150 years, visiting family in another state, posting a birthday present or sending the harvest to market would have been almost impossible without the railways.
Whilst steam trains today operate as a tourist novelty, for many years they were the height of technological achievement and modern transport. The diesel-electric locomotives that still pull our trains today were an advancement that the whole state took notice of when they were first introduced. The railways continue to provide an important service for passengers who cannot access other forms of transport, as well as these who recognise the social, environmental and personal benefits of train travel. Exploring these experiences allows us to appreciate the continuing fascination many people still feel for trains.