Heywood Corporation Tramways

Heywood Corporation only operated steam tramway services for a matter of 9 months - from 20th December 1904 to 20th September 1905 - following Rochdale Corporation's abrupt withdrawal of the service they had previously provided (on 14th June 1904) for the Bury, Rochdale and Oldham Steam Tramway Company (the track owners).

Photographs strongly suggest that Heywood Corporation continued the practice of its immediate predecessors in not issuing uniforms. Drivers wore clothing similar to railway footplatemen, namely: heavy cotton trousers and jackets, and grease top caps; whilst conductors wore informal attire similar to the latter days of the 'BR&OST', namely, jacket, shirt and tie, with flat cap. No insiginia of any kind appears to have been worn.

Photographs of inspectors have not survived, so it is impossible to state whether they wore uniforms, or indeed, if Heywood even employed inspectors.

For a short history of Heywood Corporation Tramways, see: 'The Manchester Bury Rochdale and Oldham Steam Tramway' by W G S Hyde; The Transport Publishing Company (1979).


Steam tram drivers and conductors
Heywood Corporation Steam Tram No 70 1905
A classic 'Old & New' photograph, much loved of local photographers, who saw the commercial possibilities of capturing the switch to electric traction - photo undated, but probably taken in September 1905. Here we see a Beyer Peacock product (possibly No 79) along with Rochdale Corporation Tramways rather more up-to-date No 13, at Heywood Cemetery terminus. Photo courtesy of the Richard Rosa collection.

Heywood Corporation Tramways steam tam No 79
A blow-up of the above photo showing the driver (in railway footplate-like attire) and the conductor (in informal attire, though smart enough).

Heywood Corporation Tramways Steam Tram No 81 at Heywood Cemetery
The driver of Wilkinson-patent locomotive No 81 (built by Beyer Peacock in 1886) leans nonchalently against his engine - together with his conductor - at the Heywood Cemetery terminus, allegedly on the last day of operation, 20th September 1905. Both driver and conductor are wearing informal attire without insiginia of any kind, in continuance of the policy of the previous service providers, the BR&OSTCoLtd (until 10th February 1904) and Rochdale Corporation Tramways (from 11th February 1904 to 10th June 1904). Photo courtesy of the Tramways and Light Railway Society, with thanks to David Voice.

Heywood Corporation Tramways Steam Tram No 81 at Heywood Cemetery
Another photo of No 8 at the Heywood-Rochdale boundary, but of the opposite side of the engine, and again ostensibly taken on the last day of operation, 20th September 1905. The tramcar in the background is No 27 of Rochdale Corporation Tramways. Photo courtesy of the National Tramway Museum.

Heywood Corporation Tramways Steam Tram No 81 at Heywood Cemetery
Blow-up of the above photo showing the driver and conductor, who could possibly be the same men as depicted in the previous photo.