DescriptionThe railway reached the Clutha District in the 1870s and continued to expand into isolated communities into the 1890s. Prior to the railway, communities were only connected via poor roading networks and the waterways. Rail allowed these communities to connect to wider New Zealand and the world. The ease in transportation of goods greatly benefited the Clutha District with increased trading in the sawmilling and agricutlural industires. Beyond this, the passenger service provided communities access to supplies, healthcare services, and greater social interaction. Improvement in roading, motor cars and changes to the economy eventually resulted in the demise of the Clutha District railway networks with most services ceasing by the 1970s. Today it is difficult to imagine the railway services which were once provided to settlements which are now are only a fraction of the size they once were.