Society Information

About the Society

The Australian Railway Historical Society was founded in Sydney in 1933 and from small beginnings has grown, till today there are Divisions of the Society in all States of Australia and Sub-Divisions in several provincial cities. Total membership of the Society numbers well over 2,500 throughout Australia, with Victorian members exceeding 980. The Victorian Division was formed in 1945.

Objectives of the Society are to foster an intelligent interest in railways and to record and preserve the history, past and present, of Australian Railways.

The Victorian divison of the society consists of several subgroups having special interests in railway activities ranging from Tours, the Railway Museum, Film and Video Group and Publications to the restoration of station buildings (and other pieces of railway paraphernalia) and monthly Entertainment meetings where members hear from an invited guest speaker and are invited to take place in a monthly slide competition.

The society also operates a twice yearly Great Railway Swap Meet and produce a monthly magazine Newsrail.

Below is a summary of the sub-groups and activities of the society, with links to more information.


Railway Museum

Champion Road, North Williamstown, open 12.00 noon to 5.00pm on Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays. More than 25,000 people visit the Museum each year.
Click Here for details on the Railway Museum.


Over 360 special rail tours have been organised visiting all parts of Victoria, other states and overseas. Trips range from short half-day outings to extended three-week tours of 10,000km. Steam locomotives are used where practicable.


The Society's national journal, Bulletin, contains illustrated articles of historical and current interest and is available to members only. The Victorian Division also produces Newsrail, a monthly news magazine of current railway events in Victoria. Books dealing with the history of railways in Victoria are also published by the Society.


An extensive collection of negative, prints, plans and documents available for research by members and the general public.

Reference Library

A collection of historic railway books and magazines are available for research by members and the general public.


Capturing high fidelity sounds of steam locos at work.

Sales Department

Provides a wide variety of railway books, videos, recordings and souvenirs for members.

Monthly Meetings

The Victorian Division meets on the fourth Thursday of each month at 8.00pm in the RMIT Union Theatre.

The Great Railway Swap Meet

The Victorian Divison also hold a Railway Swap Meet twice a year. Here you can buy or sell almost anything to do with railways of any gauge - N to 5'3"


Membership is open to everyone with a genuine interest in railways, whether he or she is a layman, or a professional railwayman. All members receive monthly postings of Newsrail, the Member's Newsletter and Tour Brochures. Special prices apply for Students and extra family members.
Click Here for details on Joining the Society

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