Grace's Guide To British Industrial History

Registered UK Charity (No. 115342)

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,919 pages of information and 233,587 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,919 pages of information and 233,587 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Seaton Tramway

From Graces Guide

The Station, Seaton, Devon, EX12 2NQ.

See the website of Seaton Tramway: [1].

The owner of Lancaster Electrical Co, Claude Lane, had a passion for trams; his factory helped him construct a 15 inch gauge tram (based on an ex-Darwen car number 23, then running on the Llandudno and Colwyn Bay system).

1949 Lane recouped some of his costs by running the tram at fetes and similar local events, moving further afield in later seasons.

1953 He took a lease on a permanent site at Eastbourne, forming Modern Electric Tramways Ltd.

The Eastbourne Electric Tramway ran for 2/3 mile between Princes Park and the Crumbles. Lane's Barnet works turned out a larger open-top tram to lead the new 2ft-gauge operation. Car 6 was ready for the 1956 season.

Further tramcars were built to various designs.

By the mid 1960s the growth of the town's road system began to threaten the tramway's tenure. Claude Lane opened negotiations with British Railways to acquire the Seaton to Colyton section of the Seaton and Beer Railway.

1969 The entire system was dismantled and transported to Seaton

1970 Service began at Seaton before the end of the holiday season using a battery wagon towed by the tram. The tram bogies had to be changed to 2ft 9 inch gauge; further track work was required and traction poles would have to be erected to carry the overhead wire.

1971 Claude Lane died. Allan Gardner took over as Managing Director. The company took on three new members of staff and volunteers offered their time and help.

1973 The overhead wire and fittings were put in place, and the first tram powered from the overhead line ran in September.

1980 The final extension to Colyton opened despite delays due to weather-induced problems.

Further tramcars were acquired from other lines.

Seaton Tramway now carries over 100,000 visitors a year.


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