Summer at home in Daisy Hill

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

TRAMS - OLD AND NEW

Motivated by our visit to the Sydney Tram museum a few weeks ago we decided to visit the Brisbane Tramway Museum in Ferny Grove on the other side of the city. It was a beautiful Spring day and the weekend traffic was light through the city. The museum is quite small and only open on Sundays. However, they have quite a few renovated trams that are operational just like they were many years ago. Trams stopped running in Brisbane1969. I didn't live in Brisbane before 1971 so I had never travelled on a Brisbane tram but TOH did and he was thrilled to ride on them again and remember.
 We bought tickets and looked around the static display in the small building. Then we saw the tramstop with its original signs and went to wait for a tram.
 Soon this one arrived. It was built in 1945. There was a driver and a conductor operating the tram.

 All the people working at the museum are volunteers.
The driver stands to operate the controls. He took us for a short ride through the property. It was fun rattling along the track.

The conductor punches TOH's ticket just like in the old days.
 A little later another old tram came along the track. This one was built in 1907 and has been lovingly restored by volunteers.

The driver tells us the history of the tram and explains that the coloured glass windows are originals but from different trams. The lights for night time were kerosine lamps.

 We alighted at the depot where other trams were being restored.

 But the one outside the depot caught TOH's attention. "That's the one I used to go to work on," he says excitedly. 

He enjoyed walking through the car and pretending to drive but then he told me one of his not so nice memories. On Friday afternoons after work, the boys would go to the hotel for a drink or two or three or more. TOH wasn't used to the Australian strong beer. He had only just arrived from Switzerland back then. 

On the way home from the hotel, he started to feel unwell and had to lean out of the tram and throw up. I even got a demo.

Soon the old tram arrived at the depot to take us back to the start of the track. The conductor has to change the direction of the pole that runs along the electric wires and the driver changes ends of the car. TOH was enjoying himself as much as the other kids on the tram.

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 Recently the Gold Coast City has reintroduced trams or light rail as it is called today. I managed to snap one from the car window when they were practicing running the trams so car drivers could get used to them sharing the road. There were some near misses for a while.
There was a bit of controversy about the trams being installed but I think it is a great idea. The tourists and uni students will find them a boon.


28 comments:

  1. What TOH did cannot be done in modern trams, sealed against the outside. Very funny! I look forward to your future review of the new tram line, which has been very successful from what I understand and the naysayers are silent.

    Psst, I think the thing from the tram to the wire is called a pole rather than a rod.

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  2. I think all public transportation has an important part to play in today's world. Now if all the people riding would get along! LOL I love your demo shot of TOH - hahaha. I am intrigued by how many different trams there were there!

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  3. i like them all and can't decide which i like best.. what a fun way to spend the day, i would lvoe to climb on and off all of them and ride on one.. to funny now about the puking ride, but bet it wasn't funny then... he did a great re-enactment.

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  4. Oh I love every tram especially the 1907 one. Australian Beer eh?:) Hug B

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  5. I loved this post. The trams are so lovingly restored. I sort of just missed riding in trams but remember them running up the middle of Johannesburg (and Durban, I think!) I would love SA to have preserved the trams, but I don't think they've even bothered with our beautiful and efficient train system. Loved TOH's demo of getting rid of strong Australian beer!

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  6. I have mre symphaty for the older onces.

    Greetings,
    Filip

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  7. Bill (TOH !!!!) - You would think that if you were going to do the " Chunder from Down Under"
    you might have leaned further out - that step for getting from road to tram didn't have to be 'decorated'.

    Interesting museum tour with the "unexpected demonstration of the Chunder".
    Cheers
    Colin

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  8. I like this tram museum.. It is nice they have some you can still ride.. Your hubby has some humor.. Enjoy the rest of your week!

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  9. TOH is a good sport to reenact that particular memory! Reminds me of the time in London we took a crowded train right after closing time. (Not us, we were too old by then, but everybody who was the age TOH was then .. what a (literal) mess!

    Trams (in my limited experience) are really fun and very prettly -- glad they are bringing them back.

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  10. Oh I would love to go through museum for a visit it looks so exciting

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  11. How fun that you can actually still ride them! They have been beautifully restored.

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  12. I'm glad you made it the the Brisbane team museum! I'll bet Dad have a great day! I wish I could have joined you. Big hug
    Carol

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  13. What a wonderful way to spend a beautiful Spring day! I would truly enjoy being able to ride those trams.

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  14. That's funny ! Our old trams with which I rode to school looked very similar, only they were yellow !
    We also have a tram museum in Brussels and now you gave me the idea to visit it and do a ride too !

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  15. Nice museum. Good to look at things from the past.

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  16. Trams, trolley and cable cars are all nostalgic rides to take! I'm sure TOH's demo made you laugh ;)

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  17. Whatever they are called, I love them!!!! For you, it's trams (or light rail). I like the old ones better --the open car ones... In New Orleans, they are called Streetcars... My two youngest sons went to school on the streetcars when we lived there. AND--in Galveston, Texas, where my oldest son lives now, they are called trolleys... Lots of names.. I LOVE them all.

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  18. What a fascinating post! I loved seeing all the different trams, and knowing they are so lovingly restored and displayed! TOH's story with his demo was pretty cute! :-)

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  19. Great post, I have highlighted it in this weeks GeniAus' Gems. You can see the full list here: http://geniaus.blogspot.com.au/2014/10/gags-geniaus-gems-3-october-2014.html

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  20. Sounds like a fun day out. There is a big tramway, as we discovered last year, that has been built in Casablanca. I think the cars there also had a few narrow misses, but it appears to be very popular and very busy with tourists and residents alike. Keep well t'other Diane

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  21. Beautiful trams I had to laugh seeing the story and the demonstration of the driver. We have also new rails throughout the city for the tram. The modern one in Gold coast City is nice as well. i think they are great

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  22. I'm embarrassed to say that even though I work near Ferny Grove I have never been to the museum. Must must go. Loved your story re TOH and his unfortunate experience including demonstration!

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  23. I remember the Brisbane trams but I don't think I ever caught one. They were gone by the time I lived there. And even they were still going I would have been unlikely to use them. I used to hitch hike everywhere

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  24. Enjoyed seeing all the vintage trams and TOH's sense of humor. New Orleans still has the old-fashioned kind (probably replicas) they call streetcars. Looks like a fun trip! Thanks for sharing.

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  25. Now that would be such fun to ride the old trams. AND I'd enjoy being a tourist on the Light Rail as well! Toronto has street cars still but I live north of the city so haven't been on a streetcar for years.

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  26. As a country kid it was always such an adventure to come to Brisbane and ride the trams. What a shame Brisbane didn't follow Melbourne and keep them. They can be surprisingly efficient at getting people around busy cities. The most "fun" tram I've ridden was in Lisbon - hills to rival San Francisco.

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