Queenstown tourism twins’ honoured

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More than 50 Kingston folk braved miserable weather last Thursday morning for the unveiling of a plaque commemorating two steam-driven tourism icons.

Marking the centenary of vintage lake steamer Earnslaw, the plaque also honours the little hamlet’s famous Kingston Flyer steam train.

The plaque, commissioned by the Kingston Community Association, is mounted on a 25-year-old stone cairn.

The cairn, laid in 1987 by the New Zealand Historic Places Trust, commemorates the assembly and launching at Kingston of not only the Earnslaw in 1912 but also an even earlier lake steamer, the Mountaineer, in 1879.

The Kingston-Invercargill rail service began in 1878 to serve the Wakatipu goldfields.

“We wanted to acknowledge both the steamship and the train,” KCA chairperson Annette Dalziel says.