Sandstone Heritage Trust
Little Train, Cosmos & Steam Weekend
 
9th & 10th April 2005

The invitation we received
(Copyright Sandstone Heritage Trust)
By invitation only
On the weekend of the 9th and 10th of April I was fortunate enough to be able to attend this event.
Cosmos are the white pink and deep red flowers (see picture above) that grow wild alongside the roads and fields in South Africa and bloom in autumn making a spectacular display. Sandstone Estate grows these to harvest the seed for export. To see masses of these flowers covering many acres is a sight so beautiful that it is difficult to describe. The flowers are only at their best for a few days and this weekend was perfectly timed to see them in full bloom.

Sandstone Estates is a very progressive and modern commercial farming operation set in the beautiful scenery of the Eastern Free State of South Africa just a short drive from Ficksburg and on the Lesotho border. Click here to read more about Sandstone Estates

It is also home to the Sandstone Heritage Trust dedicated to the preservation of  vintage equipment  from a bygone era. This includes farming equipment and machinery of all descriptions, vintage cars and other vehicles, stationary engines, traction engines, vintage tractors, steam engines and 2' narrow gauge rail and equipment. The farm boasts almost 20 kilometres of narrow gauge track and a large assortment of rolling stock. Locomotives, coaches and trucks are restored in large workshops on the estate as well as in other centres around the country. The Sandstone steam railroad is also put to use transporting produce on the farm and as a link to the national rail infrastructure.
Click here to read more about Sandstone Heritage Trust.

The weekend consisted of displays of vintage tractors, stationary engines, steam engines and of course the Sandstone railway. A number of trains were running and took visitors on sightseeing and photographic excursions through the fields of cosmos. Saturday evening saw a meal of "potjiekos" and dancing to a group called "The Vaaljapies". (For the benefit of non South Africans - "potjiekos" is a traditional South African dish - the word translates as "Pot food" - it is similar to a stew (but don't dare call it stew) and is prepared over a small open fire in a very large cast iron cooking pot and takes hours to cook. "Vaaljapie" is the South African nickname for the Grey Fergusson tractor which was so popular in bygone days - "Vaal" = Grey and "japie" is a slang word for "chap" or "chappie" therefore "Grey Chap".)

A good time was had by all and I extend a big thank you to Sandstone and it's people who made us all so welcome.

Click on the links below to see the pictures but whatever you do DON'T miss the scenery - this is a very beautiful part of our country. (All photographs by Jerry Evans)
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All photographs (apart from the "invitation" on the first page) are copyright of the author so feel free to use them. Commercial use may require the permission of Sandstone Estates or Sandstone Heritage Trust - just ask. Higher resolution files available - again - just ask and give credit where due.
The names "Sandstone Estates", "Sandstone Heritage Trust" & "Sandstone Railway" are the property of Sandstone Estates (Proprietory) Limited. A limited liability company registered in the Republic of South Africa.
The owner of this website is in no way associated with "Sandstone Estates" or its affiliates or agents - the only association is a mutual interest in the preservation of vintage equipment and a respect for the work they are doing.
The author states that this information is given, in good faith, to the best of his knowledge and does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions.
The information on these webpages is provided for informational and/or hobby use only and no guarantee as to it's accuracy is implied or given.
Sandstone Heritage Trust.Pictures of Vintage stationary engines at the Sandstone Little Train, Cosmos & Steam Weekend held on the 9th & 10th April 2005 at Sandstone Estates, Ficksburg, Eastern Free State, South Africa