The lit­tle en­gine town that could

The Horowhenua Mail - - FRONT PAGE -

For this Wel­come to Town so­journ,


Toko­maru holds sun-kissed me­mories for many who ven­ture out of the city in sum­mer to visit its wa­ter­ing hole.

Its wa­ter­way, Horse­shoe Bend, is a lit­tle slice of heaven on a hot day.

Chil­dren splash in the wa­ter while par­ents set up a pic­nic as the scorch­ing sun beams down.

The small town of about 550 res­i­dents is about 20 kilo­me­tres from Palmer­ston North.

The nat­u­rally-made pool re­moves you from the stress of fight­ing for the slide at the swim­ming pool as a small cliff awaits chil­dren who want to feel the thrill of div­ing into the deep blue wa­ter.

Af­ter­wards, a bare­footed scram­ble to the di­ary is a must, as you race friends to the freezer to grab to­day’s favourite ice­cream.

A day trip to Toko­maru will not only leave you re­freshed, it will also leave you know­ing more about trains if a visit to the steam en­gine mu­seum is on the cards.

Toko­maru’s mu­seum is a hid­den gem that lets young and old dis­cover the world of ma­chin­ery dat­ing back more than 100 years ago.

Esma Steven­son and her late hus­band Colin opened the Toko­maru Steam En­gine Mu­seum in 1970, col­lect­ing an ar­ray of heavy ma­chin­ery dis- played for visi­tors near and far.

It has hid­den tres­sures and fas­ci­nat­ing facts.

Steven­son said one winch was so heavy each link weighed 36 kilo­grams.

The mu­seum was al­ways pop­u­lar with school groups who were in­trigued to learn a bit of lo­co­mo­tive his­tory, she said.

Since putting the mu­seum on the mar­ket in 2015, Steven­son only opens it for book­ings.


Taipara Hur­inui, 14, and Ta­haafe Kil­isi­masi, 13, leap into invit­ing wa­ters at Horse­shoe Bend.

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