Allandale Railway Station
In 1955-6 we lived in New Lowell. The Thorpe grandparents lived in Toronto. That made for a long trip by car in those days.
I have a distinct memory of this railway station, then on the outskirts of Barrie. In fact, it probably figured in my dreams for many years after the event.
New Lowell was on a railway line from Collingwood that went through Stayner. I don’t specifically remember there being a station in New Lowell, but it isn’t beyond the realms of possibility that the train stopped where the line crossed the main road.
The train ride itself was short. But the wait at the Allandale Station was long. So I got to explore the whole site before our Toronto train came into the station.
The Past Looms Large In My Memory
This is how I remember it, in black and white. They (the Canadian National Railway) closed the station a lot of years later (in the 1980’s), but by 1959, it had been downgraded from a divisional point to a station. It lay dormant after its closure, and always looked like a relic from an ancient past. But my vision of it never diminished.
Now It Has Been Restored
As you might expect, I was surprised on my return to the Barrie area more than ten years ago to find that work was being done on the old site.
As of this time period, it is still not being utilized, as there is a lot of red tape involved in its renewal and its future. However the GO Train station has been built on the adjacent property, so the train to Toronto still runs…
In this photo from CTV News Barrie, the Allandale Station tower is visible just behind the GO Train on the left.
I’ve traveled the UK using trains. I’ve been to Vancouver on the Rocky Mountaineer. I have enjoyed many a long hour commuting between Reading and Torquay. But this first ride will always be my strongest memory.