Going by Train, The Complete New Zealand Railways Story

Going by Train

Going by Train

260 x 183 mm | Hardcover | 312 pages | RRP $59.99

Railways played a pivotal part in the development of New Zealand’s economy, towns and cities, and helped shape a distinctive culture. This is a comprehensive account of our railways story, from the earliest days of the colony, through rail’s growth and golden days, slow decline and recent resurgence. Fully illustrated, and written in a very readable style, rail fans and general readers alike will enjoy its wide-ranging topics, generous illustrations, anecdotes and personal accounts.

Going by Train details New Zealand’s railway development from its beginnings to completion of the main trunk, provincial and urban networks and the numerous branch lines reaching far-flung corners of the country. By the 1930s and ’40s, railways dominated travel and became part of the national way of life, with trains for all passengers and occasions. Graham Hutchins, who grew up in a railway town recounts the locomotives, the lines, the people and personalities in rail’s colourful history.


  • A highly readable, fully illustrated history of the New Zealand railways, written by one of the country’s leading rail authors.
  • Covers the development of the railway system from colonial times, through the golden age, right up to the present day.
  • The NZ rail story includes epic feats of engineering and construction, memorable characters, and played a key role in shaping the nation’s identity.


Graham Hutchins is a long-time railway enthusiast and a frequent traveller on the New Zealand rail network. Among several books he has written on the subject are Great New Zealand Railway Journeys and Last Train to Paradise. He has also written extensively on rugby, cricket, rock music and a range of other subjects. Graham lives in Hamilton.

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