James Joyce - Alan Bennett TV - Timeshift TV - Maurice Evan Hare - Robert Tressell - Michael Buerk TV -
It was the last tram. The lank brown horses knew it and shook their bells to the clear night in admonition. The conductor talked to the driver, both nodding often in the green light of the lamp. On the empty seats of the tram were scattered a few coloured tickets. No sound of footsteps came up or down the road. No sound broke the peace of the night save when the lank brown horses rubbed their noses together and shook their bells. James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
We live over the shop so I sleep and wake to the sound of the trams. Alan Bennett, Leeds Trams
Buses had never inspired the same affection ... Trams were bare and bony, transport reduced to its basic elements. ibid.
I knew at the time it was a mistake, just as [Richard] Beeching was a mistake, and that Life was starting to get nastier. ibid.
For a century, from the 1860s to 1960 trams were a familiar feature of Britain’s roads … They became synonymous with seaside holidays. Timeshift: The Golden Age of Trams: A Streetcar Named Desire, BBC 2011
Horses were expensive … Steam was the next choice … but steam trams never took off. ibid.
As fairs were slashed, trams became the transport of the working classes. ibid.
Bristol was unusual in that its tram cars remained open-topped. ibid.
It made [post-war] economic sense to dig the tracks up rather than replace them. ibid.
London’s last tram bowed out in 1952. And thousands turned out to say goodbye and thank you. ibid.
There once was an old man who said, ‘Damn!
It is borne in upon me I am
An engine that moves
In determinate grooves
I’m not even a bus, I’m a tram.’ Maurice Evan Hare, Limerick, 1905
Two trams passed without stopping, for they were already full of passengers, a common circumstance on Saturday nights. The next one stopped, and several passengers alighted, and then ensued a fierce struggle amongst the waiting crowd for the vacant seats. Men and women pushed, pulled and almost fought, shoving their fists and elbows into each other’s sides and breasts and faces. Robert Tressell, The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist
A new rival vehicle came to London … The rails that carried the trams were slightly raised above the roads. Everything changed in 1868: a company in Liverpool obtained a local act to introduce tram lines to their city … A horsedrawn tram could pull up to fifty passengers. Michael Buerk, How the Victorians Built Britain s1e1, Channel 5 2018