Rail Tales Exhibition at Hyde Railway Station

The Rail Tales Exhibition is now complete and open in the Hyde Railway Station. It's been a pleasure to work with the Otago Central Rail Trail Trust on this project and to see it come together.

We began working with the Trust early 2019. They had a vision of how they wanted the riders of the trail to spend more time exploring beyond the trail and discovering the local history and stories. After Michael Findlay’s original plan, we began researching and piecing together the information needed to create an engaging exhibition in an old Railway Station.

We created an Educational component www.railtales.co.nz, with lesson plans for teachers to use in the classroom as well as activities for findings for students to research. The history of the local area can be difficult to find, especially on the web, so our job was to make this a little easier and engaging for students, visitors and interest seekers.

We wanted to make a big impact in the exhibit, so as well as interesting stories, we wanted good quality images that tell stories in themselves. We were lucky enough to have Richard Emerson on board who's father George Emerson, was a frequent photographer in the area and was a rail enthusiast. The photographs provided by Richard were high impact, good quality and exactly what we were looking for. We were also supported from Toītu Otago Settlers Museum, the Hocken Collections, Central Stories Museum & Art Gallery in Alexandra, Allied Press to mention only a few. Their support is crucial to the outcome of the project.

A big thanks to my neighbour Ray from Venrulee for his building work and my app maker Grant from Applab for his contribution of voice activated technology.

An enormous thanks to Mark Sharma from Studio3 who's design work is definitely next level. He has gone beyond the call of duty to produce a quality exhibition with many complex features.

I also want to thank Alison Breese, for her amazing research and writing skills and her ability to keep me focussed when taking on new challenges such as this.

We are now into Stage 2 of the project, producing a new exhibition in Lauder Station.