Full steam ahead for family fun onboard historic locomotive

Green steam train on track pulling old carriages


  • Queensland Rail is pleased to announce that regular heritage steam train rides are back!
  • Tickets are now available for the first trip for 2024, on Sunday March 24. 
  • Passengers will ride in historic carriages on board Queensland Rail's iconic engine BB18 ¼ 1079 from North Ipswich Rail Yard to Grandchester station.


The nostalgia of steam travel returns, with Queensland Rail excited to announce that it will operate regular heritage charter services in 2024. 

The first steam service for 2024 will be onboard the iconic engine, BB18¼ 1079, in her first trip in over four years.  This loco was one of the final twenty BB18¼ Class 4-6-2 passenger locomotives constructed by Walkers Ltd, Maryborough between 1955 and 1958. It entered service with Queensland Railways in November 1956 and was retired from normal revenue service in October 1969. 

Passengers will travel in Queensland Rail's historic red wooden carriages past picturesque farming land and the historic towns of Walloon and Rosewood before arriving at Grandchester station - an opportunity not to be missed! 

The announcement follows the success of two steam train events in September and November last year, which saw passengers ride on two iconic Queensland Rail steam locomotives the AC16 and the BB18¼ 1089 from North Ipswich Railyards to the historic Grandchester Station.  The sell out events drew crowds of hundreds including many onlookers. 

Queensland Rail has partnered with the Australian Railway Historical Society Queensland Division (ARHS) for the 2024 steam train event calendar. This further strengthens the partnership with Queensland Rail that recently saw the heritage community group take over the lease for Grandchester station.  

Tickets are on sale now through the ARHS website. Ticket prices are: Adults $58, Child $40, Family $175, Concession $52 and include free entry into the Queensland Museum Rail Workshops. 

For news about future steam train events, please keep an eye on Queensland Rail's social media accounts. 

Quotes attributable to Queensland Rail CEO Kat Stapleton:

​“There's something magical about travelling by steam engine and Queensland Rail is committed to keeping our rich rail history alive with this partnership with the Australian Railway Historical Society Queensland. 

“Rail enthusiasts will be able to experience more locos in our heritage fleet, like BB18¼ 1079, which is doing its first run in four years. 

“Whether you're one or 101, the thrill of being on board one of Queensland Rail's historical fleet is for everyone. 

“Queensland Rail has been connecting communities throughout Queensland for almost 160 years and through these steam trips we're connecting today's Queenslanders with the communities of our past." 

Quotes attributable to Australian Railway History Society Queensland Division President Steve Lamprecht: 

“We are thrilled to partner with Queensland Rail to offer these events. 

“Steam engines feel like living breathing creatures, with personalities all their own, so it really is a special experience. 

“We expect these rides will be very popular, so make sure you book to ensure you don't miss out. 

"We look forward to welcoming train buffs young and old for an experience they won't forget. 

“This is just the first of many exciting steam train events for 2024." 


For more details, accredited journalists can contact Queensland Rail's media team on:

Phone: 0459 226 970
Email: media@qr.com.au