I was looking at my very old Sydney street directory, as is my want, and something caught my eye, Mortuary Station, right next to Central. I assumed whatever was there would have been long demolished, absorbed into Central, but no, the station is still there.
Its original name was later changed to Regent Street Station and it was also known as Necropolis Receiving Station. Its main purpose was for the transport of coffins from Sydney Mortuary to Rookwood Cemetery, stopping along the way at prearranged station stops to collect mourners and more coffins. By the nineteen thirties the funeral procession trains had ceased and a limited service was run on Sundays for cemetery visitors.
Melbourne's Necropolis in Springvale also had a cemetery train service, a spur line leaving the main Dandenong line just after Springvale Station.While it had long closed before I was thought of, I remember visiting the cemetery with my grandmother by bus. I seem to recall every second bus on a certain route went into the cemetery.
The architect who designed Mortuary Station also designed the station at Rookwood Cemetery. I understand the Rookwood Station was disassembled and moved to Canberra and rebuilt as a church. I'll see if I can find some photos.
Mortuary Station is now, as far as I know, locked up, but sometimes excursion trains leave from there. It has also been used as a parcel platform and quelle horreur, a pancake restaurant called Magic Mortuary. Dear old former Premier Nifty Neville Wran, about whom nothing can be said until he has died, opened the restored Station in 1985.
Waking up in Geelong.