Wascoe Siding miniature railway receives boost to get back on track

It's been the scene of countless children's birthday parties over decades, but COVID-19 has temporarily put a stop to the celebrations at Wascoe Siding miniature railway in Blaxland.

Closed to the public since March, the popular attraction has seen its income dry up even if expenses like insurance haven't.

Blue Mountains mayor Mark Greenhill is one local parent who has spent many Sundays at the former railway siding. He has stepped in to help it survive the pandemic by donating $2500 from his mayoral contingency and minor local projects funds.

"My four children have all either held or been to parties at Wascoe Siding, meaning that my long legs and tall frame have been precariously squeezed onto small trains for many years," he said. "I hope to see generations of parents experience that joy for many years to come."

The mayor has called on other councillors to make a donation as well.

"Wascoe Siding is iconic. Families come from all over the Blue Mountains to enjoy riding the wonderful and realistic miniature trains along with the picnic facilities," he said.

"The volunteers lovingly care for the site and the trains. They pour thousands of unpaid hours into something wonderful for our community. COVID-19 has hit them hard and I want to help."

Run by the Blue Mountains Railway Society, the miniature railway normally opens on the first Sunday of each month, charging a small fee for train rides.

Society president Jim Auld said their members have been keeping the grounds maintained since lockdown and they hope to reopen the attraction on a restricted basis on Sunday, September 6.

Mr Auld said the attraction usually averages about 1500 train rides during the winter months.

The miniature railway was established in 1966 at the disused railway cutting which was once the site of the main western railway line between the original Glenbrook Station and Blaxland from 1913 and 1935.