Glasgow Corporation Transport No. 1115

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Glasgow 1115

Photo: Jim Dignan

Glasgow 1115 represents a clear departure from that city’s traditional policy of gradually refining and upgrading its existing tramcar fleet through a series of incremental improvements. When faced with growing competition on its inter-urban services during the 1920s from unregulated bus operators, the Transport Department responded by adopting a radically different design of tramcar of the type favoured by large London operators, even though many of its components were designed to be inter-changeable with the existing Standard tramcars.

Hitherto, the city had exclusively operated traditional four-wheeled tramcars despite their tendency to induce an unpleasant ‘tail-wagging’ motion when passing over rail joints. But in order to improve the ride quality for passengers a new batch of 50 tramcars was ordered in 1928 that incorporated a then radical new design of eight-wheeled maximum traction bogies that were renowned for their smooth running.

glasgow-1115-bob-parr-13-aug-1961

1115 in service. R.B. Parr, 13/8/1961.

The bogies were supplied by the Ayrshire-based Kilmarnock Engineering Company and for that reason the trams became known as “Kilmarnock bogies”, though they were actually manufactured in the parent company’s English Electric works based in Preston. The bodies were constructed by three separate builders albeit to an identical specification and 1115 was one of 30 provided by the Motherwell firm of Hurst Nelson. One innovative feature involved the use of patented steel strengthening to the main pillars and this kept the sides of the tram very slim and allowed for extremely wide saloon interiors, enabling the use of double transverse seating on the lower deck for the first time.

Specification

Type of tram
Double deck, all-enclosed bogie electric tramcar
Livery
Orange and cream with red route colour
Seating capacity
68 (30 down, 38 up)
Date built
1929
Date entered service
1929
Manufacturer of body
Hurst Nelson, Motherwell
Manufacturer of truck
Kilmarnock Engineering Co. Maximum Traction Bogie
Gauge
Original: 4’ 7¾” Current: 4’ 8½”
Motor
MV101DR 2 x 60 hp
Controller
English Electric CDB2 form F
Current collector
Fischer Bow Collector
Modification

1943-4 double transverse seating on lower deck replaced by longitudinal seats to allow crush loading in war-time conditions.
‘Jack-knife’ doors installed on the lower deck bulkheads

Withdrawn from service

1961

Subsequent history

Taken into preservation December 1962.

Restoration history

Largely unrestored, much of the tram retains its original condition, though the wiring was removed in the early 1990s in order to equip it with 240 volt mains wiring as part of a static display exhibition.

Current status
Displayed in non-operational condition
Date started operating at Crich
1970 for 6 years
Total mileage covered at Crich
1,976
Current location
Exhibition Hall
Timeline
  • 1929 – 1961Operational on original tramway
  • 1961 – 1970In storage
  • 1970 – 1976Operational at Crich
  • 1976 –On display (as centrepiece of ‘Trams at Night’ display between 1990 & 2010)

Crich Tramway Village is a brand name for the National Tramway Museum (Accredited with Arts Council England), solely owned and operated by The Tramway Museum Society, incorporated in England with liability by guarantee (no. 744229). Registered charity number 313615. Our ICO number is Z6700136.