Cover art for A Natural Battleground
Interventions, March 2019
Softcover, 142 pages
21cm × 14.8cm × 0.8cm

A Natural Battleground The fight to establish a rail heritage centre at Western Australia's Midland Railway Workshops

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When the Government Railway Workshops at Midland closed on 4 March 1994, Western Australia lost a major trainer and employer of skilled tradespeople and much of its heavy industry. Former workers feared that their history of industrial achievements on the factory floor and through union action would also be lost.

Despite expending considerable resources and promising to honour a "proud history" and create an "exciting future", the development authorities have done little to redevelop the site. A Natural Battleground is the story of the fight to save the buildings from demolition and dedicate space in them for a rail heritage centre to preserve the Workshops' history. The first aim was achieved, the second is merely a hope. As the author says, "Somewhere in these buildings, decency dictates, there must be space to tell the whole story of what happened here, including what happened to those workers whose lives were irrevocably changed by their closure." Whether you are interested in the history of trade unions, heritage or railways this book will engage and inspire you.

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