Lanarkshire Tramways Company

Summary
Several photographs have survived from the first year or so of the tramway's life, which show staff wearing informal attire, along with a variety of caps, including plain kepis. This situation arose on many tramways, and was usually the result of uniforms not being delivered in time for service inauguration, however, this does not appear to be the case with the LTCo, as uniforms seem not to have made an appearance until around 1905, so this must have been a deliberate policy of the company. When uniforms were finally issued, they took the form of single-breasted jackets with five buttons (with the company title around a monogram of LTC initials - see link), two breast pockets (with button closures), upright collars and epaulettes (with button fasteners); the collars bore an employee number on both sides, whilst the epaulettes appear to have carried a badge of intertwined system initials - 'LTC' - similar if not identical to those worn on the caps. Caps were in a military style with a tensioned crown (top) and bore standard, 'off-the-shelf', script-lettering grade badges - 'Motorman' or 'Conductor' - above which a badge of intertwined system initials - 'LTC' - was worn. All badges were probably brass, to match the buttons. The basic style of the uniform does not appear to have been changed during the entire history of the company's tramway endeavours, up until closure in 1931.

Photographs show that a small badge - possibly star shaped - was carried on the left-hand sleeve of some employees - these badges almost certainly signified long service or good conduct. Tramcar crews were also issued with double-breasted great coats with two rows of five buttons, high, fold-over collars (devoid of badges), and possibly epaulettes (the latter is unclear).

Inspectors initially wore typical tramway inspector garb, i.e. single-breasted jackets with hidden buttons (or a hook and eye affair), two slit breast pockets and upright collars; the latter bore ‘Inspector’ in embroidered script lettering on both sides. The jackets (including the slit breast pockets) were edged in a finer material than the main jacket, the sleeves also being embellished with a chevron of the same material. Headgear initially took the form of a kepi-style cap, which probably bore the grade - 'Inspector' - in embroidered script lettering on a hat band, above which was worn the standard 'LTC' intertwined initials badge; these caps were subsequently changed to a military style with tensioned crown.

The LTCo also employed the services of a chief inspector; the uniform was identical to that worn by inspectors, save for the cap, which appears to have carried the full grade - 'Chief Inspector' - on a hat band.

In common with the vast majority of UK tramway operators, the LTCo employed women during the Great War, to replace male staff lost to the armed services. These ladies were initially employeed as conductresses, but later on also as motorwomen (apparently not with the greatest of success) and inspectresses. After the war, the inspectresses were switched to driving duties, and as far as is known, women continued to be employed right through to the end of tramway services. Photographs of these ladies are scarce, and those that have survived suggest that a single-breasted jacket with long, matching skirt was worn, along with a shirt and tie, though what insignia was carried is currently unclear. Headgear took the form of a baggy cap with a glossy peak, which bore the standard 'LTC' intertwined system initials badge. For colder weather, the ladies were issued with heavy, double-breasted great coats similar to those worn by their male colleagues. Motorwomen were also issued with long, double-breasted, waterproof coats (with two rows of unmarked buttons, along with rain covers for their caps, amde from the same material (see below).

For a history of the system, see: 'Lanarkshire's Trams' by A W Brotchie (Ed); N B Traction (1993).

Images

Motormen and conductors
Lanarkshire Tramways Company conductor
A rather stern-looking conductor festooned with tickets and other accoutrements, aboard the platform of Tramcar No 23 - photo undated, but probably taken in late 1903 or early 1904 given that the rocker panel bears the original name of the company, but crossed out: 'The Hamilton, Motherwell & Wishaw Tramways Co'. He appears to be wearing informal attire, along with a plain kepi-style cap.


Lanark Tramways Company staff at Power House depot 1908
A small group of motormen, conductors, inspectors and the chief inspector, assembled for the camera at the Power House in 1908.


Lanark Tramways Company tram drivers and conductors
A blow-up of the above photo showing some of the motormen and conductors. Employee No 1 on the left, who bears a passing resemblance to a certain Georgian dictator, has what appears to be a star-shaped badge on his left sleeve; a few of the others in the main photo also have this badge, which is probably either for good conduct or long service.



Huddersfield Corporation Tramways cap badges
General pattern script-lettering cap badges - 'Motorman' and 'Conductor' - of the type used by Lanarkshire Tramways Company - brass.


Lanark Tramways Company tram driver motorman
A nice study of a swanky-looking motorman (Employee No 8) and a rather less sartorially conscious fitter, taken at the Power House - photo undated.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company motorman
A blow-up of the above photo showing details of the motorman's uniform insignia and cap, which shows that the badge worn above the grade badge consisted of intertwined 'LTC' initials. The epaulette badges do not appear to be an '8' (his employee number) so were more than likely the same 'LTC' badge that was worn on the cap.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company AEC motor buse
An LTCo driver-cum-motorman leans against one of the company's AEC buses (No 2) - photo undated, but probably taken in 1919 judging by the pristine condition.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company tram bus driver
A blow-up of the above photo revealing the subject to be a motorman, or at least that is what his cap says. He also has a fine medal ribbon, almost certainly from his Great War service.


Senior staff
Lanarkshire Tramways Company tram inspectors
A blow up of the 1908 staff photo above showing Inspector Brookes (left), Chief Inspector Haggerty (middle) and Inspector Williamson (right). The jacket edges, pockets and sleeves are all embellished with material of a finer quality than the main body of the jacket.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company Chief Inspector Haggerty
A close-up of Chief Inspector Haggerty which shows that his cap bore his grade in full - 'Chief Inspector' - in embroidered script lettering, with the 'LTC' intertwined initials badge above.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company funeral tram
Inspector at the controls of Tram No 72 in Merry St, Motherwell around 1914. The tram is decked out in black and is carrying the remains of the first company inspector to die in service; more inspectors are to be seen on the top deck


Lanarkshire Tramways Company tram inspector
A blow-up of the above photo showing the inspector who is driving the car. He has the same small badge on his left sleeve that was seen on the staff photo above.


Female staff
Lanarkshire Tramways Company Lady Inspector
An LTCo female employee, thought to be an inspectress, at the controls of a rather battered-looking Tramcar 13, photo undated, but probably taken during the Great War or shortly thereafter.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company femae tram driver
An excellent studio portrait of an LTCo lady driver, presumably a motorwoman given that bus driving (at that time) would have been considered to be far too physically demanding for a lady - photo undated, but probably taken during the Great War. She is attired from head to toe in waterproof garments, presumably reflecting the inclement weather, and the exposed tramcar platforms. Author's collection.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company lady tram driver
A blow-up of the above photo, showing the cap and LTC cap badge.


Lanarkshire Tramways Company tram conductress
A blurred image, but one which does show an LTCo conductress, captured in the Power House depot yard along with Tramcar 42 in post-war livery - photo undated, but probably taken between 1919 and 1923, when this car was rebuilt. She is wearing a shirt and tie and has a baggy cap with a glossy peak.