Cooma Monaro Railway


CMR is looking for members who would like to be a part of the operation of a Tourist Railway.

Membership Enquiries


Membership Details

If you are interested in joining the CMR, yearly membership fees are:

FAMILY $65.00

SINGLE $40.00


Please print off the membership form CMR Inc. Membership Application-Renewal Form V5.pdf , fill it in, arrange payment and send form to:

Cooma Monaro Railway

PO Box 1327

Cooma. NSW 2630


Thank you, and we look forward to seeing you at Cooma Station.


Right from its beginning CMR has maintained an attitude that we will train you to achieve whatever role you desire within the group. There are no limitations to this policy. For example, CMR has benefited greatly from the participation of women in the life of the railway.  Some of the CMR ladies appear in this photo taken on our 10th anniversary weekend, including current driver Tracey Lawrence (kneeling, with orange safety vest).  It's a family thing for the Lawrences - Tracey's husband Peter (behind Tracey, with sunglasses) is also a driver. Neither is age a barrier to achievement - CMR's ranks include both the enthusiasm of youth and the experience and wisdom of age. So if you would like the opportunity to realise your goal in a busy heritage railway, see the membership details at the bottom of this page.

CMR constantly trains people to become railmotor drivers. Two recent examples were Rodney Clancy and Jeremy Jones.

Rodney is with his 2 year old daughter Adelle (we couldn't help the caption), and Jeremy with his mentor (and our Operations Manager), John Wynes (??? years old).

Photos by John Gibson.

A Historic Event

Thursday 1st December 2011 was another of those significant moments in CMR's history. A number of members and guests gathered on the station to witness the formal unveiling of the Powder Van and the presentation to four of our members of (very well deserved) awards recognising their contributions to rail heritage in NSW and in the CMR in particular.

Representing the Office of Rail heritage were Michael Herringe, Heritage Program Manager, and Keith Howard, Relationship Manager. When it was discovered that the local MP would be unable to attend the ceremonies, Mike and Keith stepped in at short notice to conduct the proceedings.

Lifetime achievement: Christa Harlander. Recognising her efforts for food preparations on charter tours since the start up of rail heritage operations.

Leadership, Management & Organisational Development: Lindsay McLachlan and Peter McFarlane – for the establishment of safety and maintenance structures for the safe operation of CMR's rolling stock. CMR President James Sullivan acknowledges Lindsay's work after he accepted the award.

Conservation, preservation, restoration and reconstruction projects: Rob McCutcheon – efforts in reconstruction of 3 torque converters' for CMR and also for the Rail Motor Society in Paterson (north of Newcastle). Also motor rebuilds for CMR.

Mike cuts the ribbon to officially unveil the Powder Van and hand it over to John Wynes and James Sullivan.

After the handover (L to R): new CMR committee member Rodney Clancy, John Gibson, Keith Howard, James Sullivan, Mike Herringe, Geoff Percival and John Wynes.

Three of our four most deserving award winners.

The event was well covered in the local media. The photos above were supplied to us by Bruce Davies from SMEC and CMR thanks them for allowing us to use them.

But Wait There's More

CMR member Tracey Lawrence received an ORH award for her work at Trainworks at Thirlmere. Congratulations Tracey!


No Experience Necessary

There is an amazing range of skills required to operate a railway such as CMR. Not just drivers, guards and signallers, but mechanics, woodworking, catering, ticket office, passenger attendants, line maintenance, buildings and grounds maintenance, painting, electrical, cleaners, fund raisers, public relations, office skills and many, many more are necessary. Everyone can contribute to the CMR's success, and training is available to enable you to acquire special skills to fit you for a particular role.

The photo shows one of our trainee drivers undertaking his practical examination to qualify as a CMR driver, under the watchful eyes of our Training Officer. Some 35 members of the CMR have now been trained for operational roles on the railway. Most of these people did not have any railway operations experience before joining the CMR. Trainees range in age from teenage to 70 plus. If you would like the chance to become involved, see the membership details below.

Level Crossing Signallers

CMR members generally have an interest in railways and railway operations, and a desire to share their hobby with others. Membership offers:

- the satisfaction of working for the preservation of Cooma's railway heritage

- operation of a working railway and associated skills

- opportunities for pursuing individual railway interests

- social outings with a railway flavour.


Training Courses

Note: All members must provide a current medical certificate before commencing training. Also note that currently qualified staff have re-certification training to attend (see below).

1. Basic Safeworking and Track Safety

2. Staff and Ticket System

3. Driver Training - Theory

4. Driver Training - Practical

5. Environmental Awareness.

6. Re-certificated Training - Safeworking.

7. Re-certificated Training - Driving.

(Note: the last 2 courses are for previously qualified drivers and they must have their medical certificates re-validated)

Final assessments for both guard/driver can be arranged with 1 months notice on separate days to training course dates.


CMR has a large HO scale model railway depicting the Monaro region. Members are needed to run and maintain the layout. Interested?

They Also Serve

You will hear it said that 'an organisation is only as good as the people who make up the organisation'. If that's the case, then the CMR is singularly fortunate in the quality of the members who contribute to our operations. It is easy to say that about our drivers, guards, railmotor maintenance and restoration people, track maintenance people and the like, all of whom do a first class job continuing CMR's high standard of  operations.  

What is not so readily apparent is the superb work done by the support people, particularly during our gala days and a number of functions for charter groups. A few are regulars around the railway, others just pitch in on the day to make our passengers' experience an enjoyable one.  Without them, CMR could not have gained the reputation for memorable group occasions that we currently enjoy. To them, the CMR says a heartfelt 'thank you'.

 The following photos, taken during a recent gala day and a party at Chakola, illustrate the point.





Side Trips

Occasionally the opportunity arises for CMR members to partake in a trip outside of the usual operations of CMR itself.

In one such example, a small group from the CMR visited the Colinton tunnel in June '09 and as usual John Gibson took lots of pictures. For those who don't know, the tunnel is a few kilometres north of Bredbo, on the section of the Canberra - Cooma line not used since the line's closure. The tunnel is in top condition, but rarely visited, because it is out of the way of all but the keenest of railway buffs. 'A bit of a walk but well worth it' was the group's feedback.




CMR Honoured at Office of Rail Heritage Awards

Recognition for Voluntary Hard Work and Dedication

 Cooma Monaro Railway volunteers have been honoured with one of the NSW Government’s prestigious Volunteer Awards for work undertaken in the Cooma and Bombala shires.

 The Awards were announced as part of the NSW Government’s annual efforts to recognise the ongoing contribution that volunteers make to telling the State’s rail story.  Ten individuals and five groups from eight organisations across NSW received awards.

Local volunteers of the Cooma Monaro Railway have been awarded the “Community Relationship Building Award” to honour “exceptional ability in building and maintaining relationships with the local community and/or region to achieve outcomes of mutual benefit”.

 Phil O'Regan, Cooma Monaro Railway’s Webmaster, accepted the award on behalf of local volunteers.

Phil and James Sullivan with the award

 Cooma Monaro Railway’s President, James Sullivan, said the contribution of all of the local volunteers over the past 15 years has been significant to the running of the facilities in Cooma.

“Our Community Relationship Building has involved a monumental effort by local volunteers and has benefited our immediate area to a point where we are now engaging with the broader region,” said Mr Sullivan.

 “We are now also assisting the Bombala Shire Council and its volunteers to upgrade the Bombala and Jincumbilly station and yard sites, and we have helped the Council to apply for a grant to establish their own rail heritage museum.

 “It’s now official – we have one of the best volunteer groups in the State.  I am proud of our local commitment and our achievements and believe it is fitting to have them honoured with an award.”

 The Cooma Monaro Railway is working to continue the vital job of conserving the trains and memorabilia which helped shape the economic and social development of the State of NSW, for current and future generations to enjoy.

 If you would like to volunteer with Cooma Monaro Railway, please see below.

CMR's yearly membership fees are:

FAMILY $65.00

SINGLE $40.00


Please print off the membership form CMR Inc. Membership Application-Renewal Form V5.pdf , fill it in, arrange payment and send form to:

Cooma Monaro Railway

PO Box 1327

Cooma. NSW 2630

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