The Australian Railway Historical Society has received $66,000 to restore 3 ex Trans-Australian Railway coaches as part of the WA Government's grant allocation for the Centenary of Federation. Exactly why the ARHS has involved itself in non WA standard gauge rolling stock is unknown, but a break-away group has formed which has based itself at the former Midland Workshops, in the building pictured.
A large collection of ARHS rolling stock is housed in this building, which is not open to the public or the majority of ARHS members, about ten members have formed the break-away group which work here. Westrail have asked ARHS to move the rolling stock back to the museum at Bassendean, and have even offered to lay the necessary track to accomodate both the narrow and standard gauge stock. ARHS have rejected this offer and Westrail have now withdrawn this offer. It appears ARHS are digging in their heals in the hope of a government grant to relocate undercover, or remain at the workshops, which are currently undergoing a major transformation. Official Government sources say that the ARHS is not part of this redevelopment. Currently the the WA Police are taking over a large portion of the site.
The ARHS has recently won a tender to restore two standard gauge coaches for Australian Southern Railway. The break-away group is carrying out this work at the workshops. Watch for further developments.