The Woodside Line was once known as the Great Southern Railway and was classified as a main line as far as Yarram. The line was well known for its sharp curves and spectacular scenary. The line was also famous as one of the last lines to offer a 'Mixed Passenger and Goods' service in Victoria. This service continued to Yarram until the early 1980s. Today little of this line remains in use with only the section between Dandenong and Cranbourne currently in use for revenue service.
The first section of this line to close was the outermost section between Yarram and Woodside which occurred many decades ago. The section to Yarram continued to be used until the cessation of the mixed goods service in the early 1980s. From this point until about 1991, the track beyond Agnes received minimal usage, although a short branch leading from Agnes to Barry Beach was used extensively for goods traffic to serve the oil platforms in Bass Strait. The Barry Beach service ceased in 1991 and with it all usage of the train line beyond Leongatha. This section of track was then dismantled in 1992, amazingly requiring the strengthening of a bridge to allow the track machine onto the track to do the dismantling.
A passenger service operated to Leongatha for many years, but this too was cut in the early 1980s. This service was reinstated by the Cain Labor Government but was later cut again by the Kennett Liberal Government in 1993. The line then became unused beyond Cranbourne which still retained a short V/Line service, except for a tourist operation to become known as South Gippsland Railway (SGR) which commenced operation between Nyora and Leongatha. In 1995 the section between Dandenong and Cranbourne was electrified and a station added at Merinda Park.
At the start of the 21st Century the election of a new Labor Government has once again seen a commitment to a return of passenger services to Leongatha. This service was due to return in 2004 but no work has so far been undertaken except for the repair of some bridges between Leongatha and Korumburra which allowed the tourist operator to restore services in this section after a break of a couple of years due to the poor condition of the bridges.
Merinda Park Station
Koo Wee Rup Station
Lang Lang Station
Stony Creek Station
Fish Creek Station
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