Wikipedia and railfan rumours

There is an old railway saying that goes “If you haven’t heard a rumour by lunchtime, then start a new one”. This leads to all kinds of harebrained discussion threads wherever railfans congregate, as well as Wikipedia articles such as this snippet I found the other day:

Tottenham Yard

Tottenham Yard was opened in the western suburb of Tottenham from the 1920s as part of a project to improve freight movement in Victoria. The majority of freight traffic in the state was from the north or western areas, and was being remarshalled into trains at Melbourne Yard. This caused inefficiencies with the large number of trains needing to enter the Melbourne city, so the yard was opened for the marshalling of trains before they were sent to Melbourne Yard.

Laid with broad gauge trackage, Tottenham is a gravitational yard with a slight slope from the Sunshine end towards the city. The yard consists of four groups of sidings: arrival roads, two groups of classification roads, and departure tracks. Heavy usage of the yard ended with the gauge conversion of the main line to Adelaide in 1995, and with the decline of broad gauge traffic in general, large areas of the yard are now used for wagon storage. Tottenham station is located to the south of the yard.

The part conversion of Tottenham Yard to standard gauge is expected to commence next year which will allow larger Standard Gauge freight trains to terminate at Tottenham with trip working from the yard to Melbourne and return.

What caught my eye was the “expected to commence next year” line in the final paragraph, which lacked any mention of the date when the statement was originally written. So when was this “partial conversion to standard gauge” supposed to have started?

Thankfully Wikipedia makes available the full edit history of each and every article available, which makes tracking down the source of the statement just a few clicks away – 19 July 2011!

Wikipedia edit history

Three years on, and nothing has happened on the partial conversion of Tottenham Yard to standard gauge front – yet another railfan rumour that came to nothing!

XR552 and one half of the Kensington grain at Tottenham Yard, ready to meet up with the other half ex-Kensington

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6 Responses to “Wikipedia and railfan rumours”

  1. Daniel says:

    Reminds me of the Wikipedia revision that flagged the proposed Southland station as Premium, based on no evidence whatsoever.

  2. Tom the first and best. says:

    Partial conversion to standard gauge seems like a good idea. Could also potentially allow, subject to bypassing the Adelaide Hills, double stacked trains between Adelaide and Tottenham (the Bunbury St tunnel is to shallow (did the RRL rebuild of the bridge over the freight lines allow for double stacking?))

    • Marcus Wong says:

      All of the new RRL works over the ARTC goods lines should be built to double-stack standards – the stations at Sunshine and West Footscray are stupidly high, as is the replacement HV McKay Footbridge at Sunshine.

  3. Matt says:

    Wikipedia is a User Edited service and it can be edited easily

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