Our April issue of Squeaky Wheel contained a fantastic article by Rail's Rick Shreuder regarding the restoration of the A1819 Dining Car, which served the Duke of Glouchester during his 1934 Royal visit of the North and South Islands. MOTAT Society Life Member, Bruce Johnson recalls another Royal rail visit, one in 1954 carrying the Queen and Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh, and has sent us photos taken by good friend, Gordon Bower, on the day...
"I am attaching 2 photos taken in Timaru in 1954. They were taken from the back fence where I lived at 18 High St and it backed onto the railway siding and mainline close to the engine sheds. The pictures are of the Queen and Duke on the rear of the train having just left Timaru station en route to Dunedin. One shows my mother and sister and neighbours waving to the Queen and the other the Duke waving to my Father and younger sister."
"The photos were taken by my very good friend Gordon Bower of Gordon Studios Timaru, (we went to primary and high school together and still keep in touch] and he has said you may use the photos anyway you please after I talked to him last week . They were taken on a Leica 35 mm which is an early model and still fully functional."
"Also Included another pic of the couple in the car in Stafford St, Timaru, taken from the roof of Dominion Motors the Morris car agents. I was with him both places at the time."
Photos courtesy of Gordon Bower, Gordon Studios Timaru