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A dilapidated historic railway station nested in a small rural town in South Australia will be upgraded amid 'dismay' over its condition.
Built in 1880, the state-heritage-listed Tantanoola Railway Station is one of the oldest remaining railway buildings in the South East of South Australia.
The historic railway site has been inactive since the 1990s. The last train to travel through was a tourist rail car 15 years ago.
Originally built to transport agricultural goods to Beachport, it has been 30 years since the station and the adjacent goods shed have been upgraded.
These iconic local heritage sites have now fallen into disarray.
To help with the upgrade, the newly reformed Tantanoola Progress Association has received funding as part of the Federal Government's Stronger Communities Program.
Susan Lines says the upgrade of the railway station is important for bringing tourism to the town.(ABC South East SA: Jack D Evans)Tantanoola Progress Association chairwoman Susan Lines said funding was needed to upgrade the railway station, including replacing the doors and weatherboards.
The goods shed will also require significant work, along with repairing the rusted-out, barrel-vaulted ceiling and the building's foundations.
Historic town treasureShe said the site was important for the town both historically and as a key tourist hot spot.
"It is an integral part of Tantanoola and it hasn't been upgraded in several years," Ms Lines said.
"It is falling into disrepair — a lot of visitors and locals are in dismay," she said.
"Because it is an integral part of Tantanoola and its history, to upgrade it would be great.
"People could call in for a day trip and head over to the hotel for a meal and a look at the history of Tantanoola."
While proponents of the project estimate the upgrade will cost around $80,000, Ms Lines believed the costs could exceed this.
"Being an older building it could be more expensive," she said.
The goods shed will have its foundations repaired and a new roof installed as part of the $80,000 upgrade.(ABC South East SA: Jack D Evans)Ms Lines said the hunt was on to find the station's doors, which vanished and were believed to be lost.
But new information has emerged that the doors were removed to prevent them from being stolen or damaged.
Ms Lines said she believed these doors were somewhere in town and appealed to members of the public for information.
"We are now trying to hunt down where they are. Hopefully they are in someone's shed," she said.
Work is expected to begin shortly on the project.
The association also plans to tidy up the surrounding area, which is often used for parking including upgrading the barbecue shelter and playground.
This article first appeared on www.abc.net.au
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