Sunday, 7 September 2008

Monday Morning Photo. 8/9/08. South Brisbane.

G'day all, South Brisbane in 1968 was a gritty, slightly down at heel part of town but just across the Victoria Bridge respectability and solidity beckoned.

South Brisbane at this time of day was noisy too, trams clattering over rail joints and crossings and gongs demanding right of way.

At Melbourne Street and Stanley Street..... Lots of cars, tramcars that is, most of them would have just run out into traffic from Ipswich Road Depot to serve the PM peak. They're queuing to cross the bridge, "One Car per Span at a Time". At this time the new Victoria Bridge was being built but without tram tracks. Clem Jones, the Lord Mayor of Brisbane, had got his way and pretty soon Brisbane's very effective tramway system would be replaced by a fleet of new Leyland Leopards.

Melbourne could have gone the same way, I believe it was on the cards. We probably have Major-General Risson to thank for saving the Melbourne's tramways. Incidentally, he came from the Brisbane City Council Tramways to run the M&MTB.

The motorman of the Dropcentre car is dwelling on the green, or maybe it's a T light. As soon as it changes, or maybe a second before, he'll hit the gong and notch up out into Melbourne Street. I know the drill well, I did it thousands of times myself in my 10+ years on the job in Melbourne.


Peter Bruce.

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