Thousands flock to Steamfest

THOUSANDS of people have attended the Hunter Valley Steamfest in an attempt to catch a glimpse of historic steam trains in action.

More than 65,000 people attended the festival across the weekend with highlights including The Great Train Race on Sunday morning and the parade on the Rally Ground covering the evolution of transport through time.

The Great Train Race featured a steam engine racing a Tiger Moth aeroplane.The Tiger Moth won this year.

Most activities were held on historic Church Street, Maitland, and the railway station precinct.

In 1983 the last coal operating steam haulage freight service was closed on the South Maitland Railway Line, effectively ending a century old institution.

In response to this closure, in 1986 the first Hunter Valley Steamfest was held.

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