Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad Company

Summary
The Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad Company only operated its own services for around two years (from July 1900 through to the summer of 1902), after which various aspects of the tramway's operation were handed over to the Dublin United Tramways Company, a concern with which the C&HoHTCo was closely associated. The DUTCo were in fact responsible for staffing the line from mid-1902 onwards (including the issue of uniforms), and full operation (effectively a complete lease of the system) from 1907 through to 1945, at which time they relinquished the lease and the line closed.

Photographs taken prior to the DUTCo take-over of 1902 are relatively rare, and those which show staff are rarer still; in fact, just a single example appears to have survived that can be fairly securely dated to the 1900-1902 period. Unfortunately, this photograph only reveals the most general uniform information, and a second photo, which could well have been taken in C&HoHTCo days, cannot be firmly dated, so what follows can only be regarded as tentative.

The available evidence suggests that tramwaymen wore very similar attire to their DUTCo counterparts, namely, single-breasted jackets with four buttons and lapels, along with kepi-style caps which probably, though not certainly, carried a cap badge. Like the DUTCo, conductors were allowed to wear straw boaters in summer.

Conductors probably also wore a shamrock-shaped conductor's licence which was issued by the Dublin Police; this was invariably attached to the wearer's cashbag strap.

From mid-1902 through to the closure of the line in 1945, staff were issued with standard DUTCo uniforms (see link).

The individual pictured on the top deck in the Howth Station photograph below is more than likely an inspector. He is wearing a single-breasted jacket with lapels and a waistcoat; like the DUTCo inspector uniforms, the collars carried insignia of some description, probably the bearer's grade. The caps carried a cap badge (of unknown pattern), and were probably in the same kepi-style favoured by the DUTCo, though given the resolution of the photograph, this cannot be stated with certainty.

For a history of Dublin's tramways, see: Through Streets Broad and Narrow' by Michael Corcoran; Midland Publishing (2000). For an overview of the Irish tram scene, including Dublin, see 'Irish Trams' by James Kilroy; Colourpoint Books (1996).

Images

Motormen and conductors
Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad Tram No 302 at Howth
Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad Company Tramcar No 301 captured beneath the tramway overbridge at Howth Station, with a Great Northern Railway of Ireland Hill of Howth tramcar (and crew) stopped upon it. The photo is clearly staged, and given the excellent condition of the C&HoHCo tram, it seems more than likely that it was taken shortly before, or shortly after, the opening of the GNRI's Hill of Howth line in the summer 1901, i.e. before the DUTCo took over the system. Photo courtesy of Jim Kilroy, tram archivist at the National Transport Museum.



Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad Tram No 302 at Howth
A blow-up of the above photo showing the motorman (in the vestibule at the front of the vehicle) and the conductor (probably) on the rear platform. The motorman is clearly wearing a single-breasted jacket with lapels, and the conductor a straw boater. Other than that, this is all that can be discerned.


Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad Tram 307 Marine Hotel Howth
Tramcar No 307 and crew captured outside the Marine Hotel at Sutton Cross, Howth. The tram is in unmodified form (bogies and headlamp position) so the photo was almost certainly taken between 1900 and the mid-Edwardian era; it is therefore unclear whether it depicts C&HoHTCo staff before or after the DUTCo had assumed responsibility for staff and uniforms (in summer 1902). With thank to Séamus Moran, the namesake and grandson of the motorman on the left; photo courtesy of the Jim Kilroy Collection.


Clontarf and Hill of Howth tram driver
A blow-up of the above photo showing Motorman Moran, who is wearing a uniform which is virtually identical to that issued by the DUTCo.


Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad tram conductor
Another blow-up of the above photo, this time of the conductor. His shamrock-shaped, Dublin Police-issued conductor's badge is attached to his cashbag strap.


Senior staff
Clontarf and Hill of Howth Tramroad Tram No 302
A blow-up of the Howth Station photo showing a uniformed individual on the top-deck, who is probably an inspector. Like the standard DUTCo inspector's uniform, the collar bears insignia. The cap carries a cap badge, though exactly what form it took is unclear. It is also unclear whether the cap is a soft-topped railway type or a kepi, though given the close assocaition with the DUTCo, probably the latter.