I have always had an interest in trams, especially London ones. Most of my relatives lived in South East London [Camberwell, East Dulwich and Forest Hill] and visiting them nearly always involved travelling by tram.
Money was not particularly plentiful in my own family, so depending who we were visiting, we tended to take the cheapest route. Visiting Auntie Connie in Forest Hill was favourite as this involved going through the Kingsway Subway tram tunnel as well as using a trolleybus on the journey.
Starting from St Albans on an 84 bus, it then meant boarding a 609 trolleybus at Barnet and changing on to a 35 tram at Archway. After a usually high-speed journey down Holloway Road this tram went through the Subway and after crossing Westminster Bridge continued to a stop at the end of my aunt's road.
The last of the old London trams ran in the early hours of 6th July 1952 and I was lucky I was able to persuade my aunt to let us see it arrive outside New Cross depot. On arrival many bits had been taken by the riders as souveniers. There was a small National Savings poster on the side at eye level and I managed to tear a corner from this as my own souvenier. At this time many trams were broken up in Charlton and I visited the yard a couple of times looking for tickets that children over the years had pushed into the woodwork. My mother was horrified when I brought these filthy relics home.
A nice touch with the modern trams in Croydon is that the fleet numbers continued from the last of the old ones.
I have many old London tram tickets and will illustrate some here in due course.
|Here's one of my local ones to be getting on with.|