Malopolska province to take over Chabowka,


but will the skills follow the engines?

A Chabowka fitter makes a new part for Ol 12-7 in Jan 2008, BTWT photo

In a development that BTWT anticipated a month ago, a reliable source told us that an understanding has now been reached between Juliusz Engelhardt, Undersecretary of State at the Ministry of Infrasructure and Chief Executive of Malopolska province, Marek Nawara, regarding the transfer of the Chabowka museum to Malopolska province.

On hearing the news, Mrs Grazyna Sysiak, the General Manager of the museum, was speechless. Mrs Sysiak and her staff had lobbied hard to save the museum when it was slated for closure in 2003, and now they face an uncertain future. It’s a sad reflection of the management style of PKP Cargo that although the Cargo Board was aware that these discussions were taking place, no one thought fit to inform the people most concerned.

The British-Polish Railway and Industrial Heritage Partnership – the ‘umbrella’ name for the Anglo-Poles who added their voices to Mrs Sysiak’s campaign in 2003 – will be making representations to the Malopolska Chief Executive’s office that Chabowka is not just a collection of historic locomotives and rolling stock, but a repository of essential technical skills that must also be preserved.

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