Dundee, Broughty Ferry and District Tramways

Photos taken in the first few years of operation show that staff wore single-breasted jackets with lapels; these appear not to have carried any kind of designation. Flatter, railway-style caps were worn, which bore a prominent metal cap badge of uncertain pattern, though more than likely, it utilised the same company monogram seen on tram waist panels and uniform buttons (see link). These badges are noticably absent on photos taken on the opening day, but appear shortly afterwards, suggesting that they might not have been delivered in time.

At some point before World War I, a change was made to a more traditional style of tramway tunic, which no doubt provided the crews with more protection than the open-necked jackets worn at the outset, at least when not worn with overcoats. Motormen generally wore a double-breasted tunic with two rows of five buttons, epaulettes and upright collars, whilst conductors generally wore single-breasted tunics with two breast pockets, again with upright collars. There is nothing on surviving photos to suggest that any kind of insignia were worn on the collars. Photos clearly show the different styles of tunic were not specific to motormen or conductors, as motormen are occasionally seen wearing the single-breasted tunics, and conductors, the double-breasted tunics.

Flatter, railway-style caps with the large oval cap badges, continued to be worn, but at some point - probably around the time of the First World War - standard script-lettering cap badges ('Motorman' and 'Conductor') came into use. This seems not to have been a wholesale replacement, so in all likelihood, it was a cost-saving measure for new orders. Such badges could be bought 'off the shelf' from manufacturers, whereas the 'marked' badges would have had to have been pre-ordered, and were of course specific to the DBF&DT company, and therefore more costly. This type of badge replacement occurred on many of the smaller British tramway systems. Conductors also wore a licence of some kind, usually on their cashbag shoulder straps - this appears to have been round in the early years and oval later on. Photos also exist which show male crewmen wearing more modern, single-breasted jackets with breast pockets, epaulettes and lapels; these were probably introduced late on in the life of the system.

Women were employed in small numbers during World War I, and in stark contrast to the vast majority of other UK tramway systems, they continued to be employed (as conductresses) right through the 1920s. Female staff were issued with long skirts and long, single-breasted jackets with five buttons, a waist belt (with button), hip pockets and lapels; once again, the latter appear to have carried no designation. Dark-coloured straw bonnets were worn, which bore a hat band, but curiously no cap badge. The bonnets may have been intended for summer use as photos also exist which show female employees wearing floppy caps with a glossy peak; these carried a standard script-lettering cap badge, 'Conductor'.

Men were also issued with double-breasted overcoats with lapels (once again no insiginia of any kind appears to have been worn), whilst women were issued with single-breasted overcoats with lapels (for general use) and single-breasted dust coats with lapels for summer wear. The wearing of dust coats in summer was a fairly rare practice amongst British tramway operators.

The attire worn by inspectors is currently unknown.

With grateful thanks to Alan Brotchie for help with the above information and photos.


Dundee, Broughty Ferry & District Tramway crew
A motorman at the controls of Tramcar No 3 on the opening day. The motorman is clearly wearing an overcoat, presumably with jacket/tunic underneath. Curiously, no cap badge appears to be in evidence. With thanks to Alan Brotchie.

Dundee, Broughty Ferry & District Tramway crew
Three crewmen pose with Tramcar No 5 at the original terminus in Union St, Monifieth - photo undated but very probably taken in the first few months of operation. The rather stern looking gentleman at the controls may well be an inspector. Note that the conductor is clearly wearing some kind of licence on his cashbag strap. With thanks to Alan Brotchie.

Dundee, Broughty Ferry & District Tramway crew
Conductor and motorman pose aboard Tramcar No 7 on the single track access to the depot at Milton - photo undated but certainly before WWI and possibly much earlier. The conductor appears to be wearing an oval badge on his cashbag shoulder strap, almost certainly a municipal licence. With thanks to Alan Brotchie.

Dundee, Broughty Ferry & District Tramway crew
Motorman and conductress pose with their tramcar at Monifieth - photo undated, but probably taken in the early 1920s. The motorman's script-lettering cap badge can be clearly seen, but matters are less clear with the conductress. Note the oval licence (probably) just above the conductress's right hand. With thanks to Alan Brotchie.

Motorman and Conductor badges
General pattern script-lettering cap badges - Motorman and Conductor - brass.

Dundee, Broughty Ferry & District Tramway crew
Four members of staff pose with a tramcar at Monifieth - photo undated, but probably taken in the late 1920s. The motorman at the controls is wearing a script-lettering cap badge, as is the figure on the left, who is most probably also a motorman; both are also wearing jackets with lapels. The ladies are wearing straw bonnets without badges, along with long dust coats (indicating that it was summer). The lady on the left appears to be wearing an oval licence on her cashbag strap. With thanks to Alan Brotchie.

Dundee, Broughty Ferry & District Tramway crew
Two motormen and a conductor pose with a tramcar at the extension terminus at Tay St, Monifieth - photo undated, but very probably taken in the 1920s. It is possible that the two individuals at the front are actually Dundee City Tramways employees as the service was operated by both the DBF&DT and the municipal undertaking, and both individuals appear to be wearing a 'coat of arms' like badge rather than the standard script-lettering badges worn by the motorman. Furthermore, the man on the left is wearing two small circular badges on his collars, which are not evident in any other photo of DBF&DT staff. There is also no sign of a municipal licence about the conductor's uniform. With thanks to Alan Brotchie.

Dundee, Broughty Ferry & District Tramway crew
Four members of staff (probably two crews) pose on the platform of Tramcar No 13 - photo undated, but probably taken in the 1920s. It is not 100% unequivocal, but all appear to be wearing script-lettering cap badges. It is almost certainly winter time (or what passes for spring/autumn in the British Isles) given that all are attired in heavy overcoats with lapels, the mens' double breasted and the lady's single breasted. Photo from the M H Waller, collection courtesy of Alan Brotchie.