Peter Abbott with the trucks which were built for use in Bendigo in the 1890s. Photo: ANDREW PERRYMAN

A major clean-up of the old Bendigo Gasworks has uncovered some fascinating artefacts.

These include a dangerous looking weed cutting punt once used by the rowing club at Lake Weeroona and the trucks from one of Bendigo’s steam trams, which were built for use in Bendigo, back in the 1890s.

Bendigo Heritage Attractions were recently asked to prepare to vacate the gasworks site in view of the City of Greater Bendigo’s announcement that they intend to redevelop the site into a new tourism precinct.

“While we fully support the council’s new plans for the site, it is proving to be a time consuming and expensive process for us to move given that the tramways has used the site as a second depot for many years,” BHA CEO Peter Abbott said.

“However, we are making good progress preparing for the move and appreciate the council’s support so far in helping with the process … of course the discovery of hidden treasures makes it a bit more interesting.”

Having done some research into the weed cutter, it appears to have been bought by the rowing club from the State Rivers in Murtoa to help remove the weeds in Lake Weeroona.

According to those who used it: “It had a turning circle to match the Titanic and similar buoyancy characteristics” so it was eventually retired in favour of more modern equipment.

The discovery of the steam tram trucks is significant in that, there are no known steam trams left from when they ran in Bendigo from 1892-1902.