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The 1954 Royal tour of NSW

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the first visit by Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh to New South Wales in 1954. Excited crowds greeted the young couple as they travelled throughout the state for 10 days.

Royal Express to Central

The Royal Express to Central exhibition retraces the journey taken by the Queen and Duke from Bathurst to Central Station on Friday 12 February 1954, with official functions and parades in towns along the way. The day began with a flight from Sydney to Bathurst. The Queen and Duke then embarked upon the Royal Train to Bowenfels, to be driven by car to Lithgow. They rejoined the train for the trip to Katoomba, took a sightseeing drive to Leura, and finally returned to the Royal train for a sometimes slow but steady express to Central.


Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Phillip onboard the royal train (through Mount Victoria), 12 Feb 1954


NSW Royal Tour Guide - country tour map showing railway system

At journeys end 'The train was 47 minutes late arriving in Sydney owing to the slow running requested by Her Majesty the Queen because of the large crowds of enthusiastic people along the running tracks and station platforms.'

Royal Express to Central features records and objects from the collections of State Records, Australian Railway Historical Society NSW Division and Transport Heritage NSW Ltd, including the original Royal Train headboard.

Royal Express to Central is on display at State Records, Western Sydney Records Centre until 30 June 2014