Ferrymead Youth Programme continues tradition

Team Ferrymead, part of the New Zealand Future heritage network

The Ferrymead Railway continues the tradition of passing on valuable skills to a new generation of rail heritage enthusiasts. The Ferrymead Youth team is part of the Future Heritage Network a New Zealand wide movement to involve young people in restoration and preservation projects.
The Future Heritage Network (FHN) project will be developed in several stages over the next few years. It is driven by the following key objectives.
1. To attract young members to the rail preservation movement in New Zealand. Railways and tramways are no longer perceived as being on the cutting edge of technology, they do not hold the position of technological prestige or social standing that they did when past generations of enthusiasts were drawn to them when young. By combining rail preservation activity with an internet based community of youth with similar interests, this project will link current youth interest in the newest of technologies with the restoration of the oldest.
2. To retain young members in the rail preservation movement in New Zealand. Many preservation groups attract new young members but do not retain them as active members into adulthood. The FHN project will provide a structure for young members to move from project to project, each increasing in complexity, thus building a new skilled workforce within our nation's preservation movement who can fill the shoes of those now ageing and becoming less active. Young members will be able to feel the satisfaction gained from starting and finishing a complete restoration project. They will also be able to share their progress and experiences with their peers across the country.
3. To capture and use the wealth of experience and knowledge currently held by senior members of preservation groups. The passage of time robs the nation of the unique knowledge and skills held in the minds of men and women experienced in the operation and repair of heritage rail equipment. The second stage of the FHN project will see younger members of groups using digital video equipment to record, edit and publish a series of resources directly from those who hold the knowledge 'in their heads'. These resources will be streamed on the internet and released as DVDs.

Stage One - The FHN teams
In order to establish the project FRONZ member groups will form a teams of young members Each of these teams will be lead by a nominated FHN team mentor (an adult member of the group concerned). Each team will be assigned a simple and achievable restoration project.
The FHN website allows the teams to use blogs to document and share their progress and develop a healthy sense of competition between the teams on a nation-wide basis.
Team Ferrymead
The first project for the Ferrymead Railway team is the resotration of an ex NZR tank wagon. Team mentor Kevin Holland had taken them through a project planning exercise . Work is nearly completed with replacement of one damaged end timber as the only major piece remaining.

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