In this final part, we bring together the best memories that you, our readers, have contributed to our Yahoo! Answers question, and share trivia about the station you might not have known previously.
Over the past two weeks, thousands of people lined the well-worn platforms of Tanjong Pagar Railway Station with their cameras and families, eager to seize the moment of KTM train arrivals and departures in pictures that would jog their memories in future.
Yahoo! Singapore readers, young and old, shared their most treasured moments and experiences with us on Yahoo! Answers, where we asked the question: What are your favourite memories of the KTM Railway?
Some recounted vivid descriptions of their experiences on the train, from snack and soft drink-sellers (such as 98-year-old Low Her Kee, pictured above) tapping their can openers against their metal box trolleys, to the state of the on-board toilets.
"Whenever the train reached any station for a short while, there were always walking hawkers selling drinks, fruits, food and even toys," shared user Soon Sidney.
"They (would) come up the train to sell, or even go window to window peddling their wares."
CitizenOfSingapore writes, "They sold all kinds of food -- nasi lemak, goreng pisang, keropok, peanuts, hot and cold drinks, you name it. Once in awhile, my father would bring me to the mini cafe on the train to buy hot tea or coffee."
"Back then I got very scared moving from carriage to carriage because there was a gap we passed through in between where we could look down and see the tracks," Citizen added.
User John L shared his first experience travelling on the train with his two colleagues, more than 41 years ago.
Explaining that the salary he earned back then was enough only to afford third-class train tickets to Penang, he said, "It was the cheapest among all classes, and was fitted only with wooden benches and an electric fan."
"The journey in that bone-shaker from Singapore to Penang took us about 30 hours, stopping at almost every station along the way," he added. "We didn't sleep throughout the journey for two reasons -- we were too excited, and those constantly-shaking wooden benches simply were not meant for anyone to sleep on!"
User deepee shared a most amusing memory of the on-board toilets. "Then of course it was the toilet!! A gaping hole where you did your business and see your 'gold' fall off and scatter down under the tracks!! Amazing!!"
"'Solid gold' will fall right through the hole and scatter. But 'liquid gold'?? It was terrible. The air pressure rushed them back to a good part of your buttocks and legs. Great memories!!" deepee wrote, with a laugh.
Yahoo! reader Fei was one of a group of 'regulars' on the KTM train, who commuted from Johor Bahru to Singapore and back each day while working in the CBD in the late 1990s.
"There was a large number of us taking the same journey back on the same train, at the same time, every day," said Fei, who likened them to neighbours living in the same HDB apartment block.
"Some of the people 'chope' seats when they board early, so sometimes if you go up and see all these bags and plastic bags on the seat, these are 'choped' for 'regulars' who board the train a little late. A few times I was lucky enough to get a seat from these people -- one Malay uncle would say, 'These seats are reserved for 'regulars''. I bet you can't see this happening on the MRT!!"
Other users wrote of their personal experiences and youthful mischief along the train tracks, catching grasshoppers, playing and watching goods trains pull in, offload and depart from the station.
Aiyoyo Samy shared the nostalgia he felt, on reflection of his experiences.
"I was born there and grew up there," he wrote. "My father used to work for the KTM, and my railway friends and I would roam the railway yard and jump onto the shunting trains. At times we (were) chased by the station master, who (incidentally) was the father of the former NKF boss T.T. Durai. He would report our bad behaviour to my father, who showed me no mercy... I got a good thrashing from my father when he returned home!"
User balasubramaniamG wrote of the short cuts across the tracks that he and his friends would take while walking to school.
"There used to be a temple right in the middle of the tracks that showed devotional movies during festive celebrations, and I remember when the train used to go by between the projector and the screen, blocking our view and the sound of the movie for several minutes sometimes," he said.
Yahoo! reader Prem said, "When I was about five years old, before going to primary one, I would go to the goods train, which would be parked just before the station -- a few metres away. They would be unloading fruits like watermelons; I used to stand outside the goods train, and the workers would give me some watermelons to take back home."
"Till today, I still bring my wife and children for dinner or tea to the coffee stall (Hasan Coffee Stall)," he added.
Users shared many other memories of taking the trains with their families, but one particular user provided a taste into the more sleazy side of the station.
He wrote, "Back in the 70s, there was a pub in the station that was filled with smoke (from Guram Guram and Katek cigarettes), with Indonesian hostesses sitting on customers' laps while sharing jugs of beer. Those were the days."
This reporter happened to meet a Singaporean who shared much more about the secrets that this train station once held. We won't say more -- watch the video below to hear his story.
Last night, the last KTM train pulled out of the Tanjong Pagar Railway Station at 11pm, as ownership of the property changed hands from Malaysia to Singapore at the stroke of midnight.
It was driven by the Sultan of Johor, Ibrahim Iskandar, and some 600 passengers were invited for a ride on the special train.
These included Johor royalty and officials, current and former KTM staff, KTM train enthusiasts and 50 Malaysian and Singaporean journalists.
Sultan Ibrahim drove the train into the Woodlands Checkpoint at 11.45pm, where he got off to take a tour around the station, before bringing the train into JB Sentral.
Retired KTM manager Mah Kim Chow, 70, who served at the station for 38 years, told local media, "For those who work here, they will always have the railway in their heart. I'm glad Singapore will preserve the building, which is so beautiful."
Read the other two parts in this feature print & video series:
- The KTM Railway: Last Ride Out (Part 1)
- The KTM Railway: Last Ride Out (Part 2)
- In Pictures: The KTM Railway Station