Thursday, 3 June 2010

Brighton's Trams

Brighton's tram system which opened in 1901 with the route from Valley Gardens to the depot in Lewes Road ran anti-clockwise around the Valley Gardens until 1929.  The whole system was completed by 1904 with routes to Brighton Station, Tivoli Cresent, Fiveways, Race Hill, and Rock Gardens. In 1929 the direction around the Valley Gardens was switched to clockwise and the last tram ran in 1939 to be replaced by trolley buses and motor buses, these being considered more flexible and versatile.

It is ironic how today's traffic conditions have constrained modern buses to follow tram-like bus-lanes. Had anything significant of the tramway infrastructure survived it would no doubt have been seized on and modernised as a partial answer to the City's congestion & pollution problems. As it is, the only relics still to be seen are the shelters in Ditchling Road (Florence Place), in Dyke Road (reservoir), in Queens Park Road (The Pepperbox) and Ditchling Road (opposite Surrenden Road); the last two being Grade II listed.

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