Festival of the Fifties

Relive the fabulous fifties – the days of real public transport!

This Sunday, 10th November, join us when our return to this golden era is made realistic at our Museum by our newly lengthened strip of fifties style concreted double tram track.

R1 2001 passing R1 1979 at Railway Square
R1 2001 passing R1 1979 at Railway Square

At last we have a decent length of double track where trams running in opposite directions can pass each other.

We hope to stage some re-enactments of what was normal tram running in two way streets. You can be one of the very first members of the public to be part of one of these re-enactments riding on trams arranged to pass each other on this new track … just like in the good old days!

This trackage has been laid by our own volunteers aided by good souls from around the Shire who readily assisted us on their Saturdays with the project.

Thanks, also, to the Concrite company who supplied us with the concrete needed for this new work.

R 1740 about to pass R1 1979 on the new track.
R 1740 about to pass R1 1979 on the new track.

The corridor trams shown in these top two photos gradually became the main part of the fleet in the later of the decade as diesel buses tried to “replace” the trams.

Though seating fewer people than the older pre-war high capacity people movers shown in the lower photo, the corridor types with plush leather or vinyl padded seats delighted people on lines which had previously been largely served by the cross bench trams.


The 80 seater toastrack trams shown coupled_hbr_brhere were all built prior to WW I. 626 of them were built. They were renowned for their ability to move the crowds, especially in peak hours, race days or beach days.

They excelled for this task at the Easter Show and the Randwick races. On visits to the Zoo in the fifties, a double set would collect us from our ferry wharf and take us to the top gate. It was all part of the magic!