Images of rail trail’s past being finished

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Images illustrating the history of the Otago Central Rail Trail from the gold-mining days to the present day are being completed by Alexandra artist Bruce Potter at the Daphne Hull Underpass in Clyde.

The series of images by Potter will decorate the underground tunnel between Clyde and the beginning of the rail trail beside Springvale Rd.

“This side is actually more of the history, so I start off with a horse and a miner before there was a trail, and it turns into wagons when they started to use it as a route, and then the creation of the train line, laying tracks, then one of the old trains that was used,” Potter said.

The mural continued with the depiction of the closing of the rail line, the building the rail trail and up to present day, ending with a horse and rider.

“We finish with a horse because we started with a horse”.

This is the second phase of the project, which was commissioned by Promote Dunstan.

Potter said he spent around 500 hours last year completing the opposite side of the tunnel, which was adorned with some of the scenes people would see on the rail trail.

The mural was just one of many endeavours he had been involved with this year, Potter said.

He illustrated Queenstown children’s author Craig Smith’s book The Drizzly Bear, which had just been released, and earlier in the year performed in the Gilbert and Sullivan opera The Mikado, staged in regional halls including the Earnscleugh Hall, Naseby Town Hall and Ranfurly Public Hall.

“We have got another run of The Mikado coming up next month – we are out at Lowburn Hall – and we will finish up just before Christmas back at Earnscleugh.”

“You’ve got to be busy – it’s been a really good year.”