Liverpool – 1957 – A brouchure from when the City’s last tramcar ran

This 40 page illustrated booklet was printed by Tinlings of Liverpool a well known printing company of the day.

I was lucky recently to pick up a copy of ‘The First Sixty Years’ booklet which describes itself as ‘A pictorial record of the Liverpool Corporation Passenger Transport undertaking issued on the occasion of the last tramcar running in Liverpool on the 14th September 1957’

It’s a fascinating read and is well illustrated with photos of the trams, buses and indeed the people who worked for the Corporation’s Passenger Transport Department up until that date. Now, of course, passenger transportation in Liverpool is a Merseyside County-wide/City Region operation run by Merseytravel.

Liverpool’s last tram as depicted on a postcard *

I was interested to see the illustration below from the booklet of a tramcar that ran from Aintree to Aigburth until the 1930’s:-

What’s really good news is that two former Liverpool Corporation trams are alive and very well. One is easily accessed at Wirral Transport Museum in Birkenhead (it’s known as a ‘Baby Grand’) and the other (Liverpool Streamline Tram 869) is at the National Tramway Museum in Crich, Derbyshire. Both are in working order having been fully restored and the one at Wirral Transport Museum (Taylor Street Birkenhead) is regularly out on the track to and from Woodside Ferry Terminal on Museum open days.

‘Baby Grand’ Tramcar 245 at Woodside Ferry Terminal.

Liverpool Tram 869 at Crich Tramway Village, Derbyshire.

* The tramcar was bought by the Seashore Trolley Museum of Kennebunkport, Maine, U.S. and shipped via Boston, Massachusetts in 1958. As of 2017, it was at the back of a shed at the Museum, and in poor condition. – source Wikipedia

Liverpool’s famous Green Goddesses

It’s hard to believe in 2019 that back in the 1930’s, 1940’s and 1950’s it was all the fashion to get rid of tramways and get rid of them virtually every UK town and city did – Liverpool in 1957.

The City had some really nice streamlined trams, the larger version of which gained the nickname ‘Green Goddess’ and if you are willing to travel to Derbyshire they have one at the National Tramway Museum at Crich – see link below. Sadly, each time I’ve been there it has not been one of the trams in use that day but you never know one day I’ll be lucky.

www.tramway.co.uk/trams/liverpool-869/

I would add that the smaller streamlined tram in Liverpool also had a nickname ‘Baby Grand’ and there’s a beautiful example of one at Wirral Transport Museum. It belongs to National Museums Liverpool. But I digress this posting is about the larger Green Goddesses.

The first two photo’s in the posting are from postcards.

The lead photo is of tram 293 built at Edge Lane Works in 1939. It is pictured at Hurst Gardens, Edge Lane Drive Liverpool in September 1957 in it’s special Last Tram livery. It is now I understand at Seashore Trolley Museum USA – Photo credit late Brian P Martin collection.

The 2nd photo is of tram 869 at the National tramway Museum Crich. It was restored in Liverpool by the ‘869 Group’ of the Merseyside Tramway Preservation Society. Photo credit unknown.

And finally a couple of shots I have taken myself – One at Crich of tram 869 in April this year and one of an OO gauge model of a Green Goddess on the model railway at Wirral Transport Museum:-

This photo is also amongst my Flickr shots at:- www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

Still not got to ride a Baby Grand

No not a piano but a Baby Grand tram as this particular type of tram became known as.

The one I am talking about (former Liverpool Corporation tram 245) was restored to working order at Birkenhead Tramway Museum during 2015 but despite a number of trips over to Birkenhead I have still not been able to ride on it.

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I thought last night’s ‘Night at the Tramway Museum’ event was cert’ for a ride as it was definitely running. However, Murphy’s law intervened as it broke down at the Woodside Ferry Terminal end of the line before Jen and I had chance to ride on it. We had to settle for a look around it as a static exhibit. Here are a couple of photos of the beautifully restored (Tram of the year 2015) Liverpool Baby Grand:-

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Click on the photos to enlarge them.

The two photos above are on my Flickr page at:-

www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

Merseyside Tramway Preservation Trust – That newly relaunched Liverpool Baby Grand Tram

Old mate Keith and I together with Jen went to have a look at the new refurbished tram today and great it looks too.

It’s seen below in green and white next to a much older Liverpool tram.

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Click on the photo to enlarge it.

Trouble was it was not running and I got the impression that there were a fair number of us disappointed visitors who had all turned up today at the Trust’s Taylor Street Depot in Birkenhead just to see it running.

Turns out that the volunteer run Trust only have two trained drivers who can operate this tram which has different driving features to the others operated by the Trust. I assume none of the trained drivers were available today so it did not run.

Whilst realising our fun was reliant on volunteers I wonder if I could make a suggestion? It is for the Trust to say clearly on its web site each day which trams will be running so that we can return on a day the Liverpool Baby Grand is running?

And thanks to the volunteers for all they do, without them this great piece of rebuilding would never have happened.

The photo is also on my Flicker Page at:-

www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/