Great Crosby Tramways (Waterloo and Great Crosby Tramways)

Summary
Photographs of this small and somewhat unusual system (the only one in the British Isles owned municipally, but worked by a railway company) are relatively rare, so it is not possible to state with any degree of certainty how the uniforms changed over its 25-year life span. A few early photographs have however survived, which at least reveal the headgear and cap badges worn in that era.

These photos suggest that staff wore double-breasted jackets with high, fold-over collars, though it is possible, given the poor quality of the photos, that they are actually overcoats rather than tunics. Caps were clearly in the kepi style with a glossy horizontal peak and light-coloured piping; they carried a large oval cap badge comprising the title of the operating company - The Liverpool Overhead Railway Co - around the company monogram 'LORC'. The badge was probably nickel, as were the buttons (see link).

In subsequent years (certainly by late Edwardian times), tunics were single-breasted with five buttons and two breast pockets (with button closures); those for conductors had lapels, whereas those for motormen had upright collars; neither appears to have carried any insignia. Caps were also changed to a more contemporary upright military style, though they retained the earlier 'LOR' cap badge.

Women were probably employed during the Great War to replace male staff lost to the armed services, however, photographic evidence is currently lacking, as it is for inspectors.

Images


Great Crospby Tram 4
Great Crosby Tramways Car No 4 - photo undated, but probably taken in the Edwardian era. Note that the tramcar is clearly marked with the operating company - Liverpool Overhead Railway - rather than the municipal owners (Waterloo-with-Seaforth and Great Crosby UDCs). Photo courtesy of the Tramways and Light Railway Society, with particular thanks to David Voice.


Great Crosby Tramways crew
A blow-up of the above photo showing the crew. The individuals behind the driver are wearing kepi-style caps with a large oval badge, almost certainly that depicted below.



Great Crosby Tramways cap badge - nickel. With thanks to Talisman Auctions.


Great Crosby Tramways no 5
An unusual side profile of a motorman, but one that clearly shows the kepi-style cap and piping - photo undated, but again very probably taken in the early Edwardian era. Photo courtesy of the Tramways and Light Railway Society, with particular thanks to David Voice.


Great Crosby Tramways crew
Conductor and motorman pose for the camera with what appears to be a recently out-shopped tramcar; the photo was probably taken at the Seaforth Sands terminus beneath the Liverpool Overhead Railway station, and is undated, though certainly taken prior to the First World War. Whilst both men are wearing single-breasted tunics, the conductor's has lapels, whereas the motorman's has upright collars. Note that both men are wearing an oval badge on their left breasts, which is not seen in other photos - this may be something to do with the occasion, as the tram is decorated and carries a 'God Save the Queen' banner. Author's collection.


Great Crosby Tramwways 14
Motorman at the controls of Tramcar No 14, one of the few top-covered vehicles in the fleet - photo undated, but probably taken around the time of the Great War (the motorman is possibly wearing a medal ribbon). Note that the motorman is wearing a single breasted jacket and a military style cap. Photo courtesy of the Tramways and Light Railway Society, with particular thanks to David Voice.