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Historic steam-powered Beam Engine To Reopen



17 April 2008



Historic steam-powered Beam Engine to officially reopen at MOTAT

A grand ceremony will be held at Auckland’s Museum of Transport and Technology at noon on Saturday, 19 April to officially reopen the restored Western Springs Pumping Station Beam Engine.  

Media and photographers are most welcome to attend the ceremony. Local dignitaries and government representatives will be in attendance.

The 131 year-old steam-powered engine pumped up to 2 million gallons of water every day from Western Springs Lake to homes and businesses in the early years of Auckland’s settlement. It has been restored after years of painstaking work by MOTAT’s team of volunteers and steam enthusiasts.

As well as the ceremony, MOTAT is marking the unveiling with a full day of activities showcasing the museum’s many steam-related exhibits and artefacts, as well as visiting exhibits provided by the New Zealand steam engine community.

Museum Director, Jeremy Hubbard, says that the reopening of the Beam Engine in MOTAT’s Pump House will bring a significant national treasure from New Zealand’s history back into public awareness.  

“The Beam Engine restoration is a significant milestone for the museum, as part of MOTAT’s oldest building. It is a jewel in our extensive collection of historical treasures that New Zealanders will want to continue experiencing,” says Mr Hubbard.  

A book detailing the history of the Auckland Waterworks and the Pump House will be released at the opening event and available for purchase.

In the two weeks following the Beam Engine reopening, MOTAT will be running an educational school holiday programme about how water works, with hands-on activities based on collecting, storing, using and disposing of water as it was done in Auckland’s early days.



MOTAT’S ’Beam Engine Re-Opening Celebration’ day will open from 10am to 5pm (final entry at 4.30pm) on Saturday 19 April.  Official reopening ceremony will take place around 12 noon.


MOTAT main entrance, Great North Road and Motions Road, Western Springs, Auckland.


You can experience MOTAT’s ’Beam Engine Re-Opening Celebration’ as part of your MOTAT entry fee. You can also enjoy the rest of the museum, free tram rides and entry to the Tactile Dome and Voyager I for one great price.

Family (2 adults and up to 4 children) $30
Adults $14
Children (under 16) $7
Senior Citizens $7
Children under 5 years are free
Annual Family Pass $65 (unlimited visits to MOTAT)


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