The Sebas Trams

Number 21; I was coming down Drummond St. South one day, near
Urquhart St. There were two older women sitting in the tram, with their umbrellas, they
were the only two in the tram. I got out, the driver put on the magnetic brake. One of the
old girls slipped off the seat and fell down. Luckily one of the blinds unfolded and let
her out. She's hanging out over the side, legs up in the air and backside hanging out. She
squealed like a pig. Of course I had to dash out and try to push her up. Eventually I got
her up and by Jove she went crook. I got a couple of day's holiday, stood down for a
couple of days for laughing, when she fell out! Only for the blind being unfolded she
could have been killed, or run over by a (motor) car, though there weren't many cars about
in those days.

Excerpt from a story told by Les Edwards who was  a
conductor on one of the "Sebastopol" crossbench tramcars.

Btm311i.GIF (11149 bytes)No. 21 on
the Sebastopol line in the early 1930's, with the Sebastopol shops in the background.
Photo shows the tram with a number of the blinds drawn.

Photo Wal Jack.

 

 

BTM URQUART ST MAP.GIF (21976 bytes)

From the story it appears that the woman
who fell  complained to tramway management and Les Edwards was suspended for a few
days while the matter was considered.To the right is a map showing the location of the
incident with the female passenger, at the corner of Urquhart St and Drummond St. south.

Map from a portion of the "Greater
Ballarat Association" map of July 1968, with some additions
.

For the electrification of the Sebastopol
horse tramline, Duncan & Fraser tramcar builders of Adelaide built three semi open
crossbench cars in 1913. These were the last new tramcars to be built for Ballarat and
they made their public debut carrying councillors at the official opening of Sebastopol's
electric service, and were numbered 21 to 23.

 

BTM 21 SIDE ON.GIF (15998 bytes)State
Electricity Commission of Victoria photo of No. 21 showing the cross bench (commonly known
as a "toast rack" arrangement of the tram seating and the doors.

 

During summer, extra seats were placed in
the aisles, so the conductor used the footboard to collect fares, in later years this
practice ceased. During winter the weather blinds provided some protection against the
elements. These cars were more solidly built than cars 1 to 18. During the early 1930s
seats were provided for the motorman and the "goose neck" hand brake handles
were replaced by a wheel type, as it was intended to retain these cars in service for some
time. After the arrival of additional ex-MMTB (Melbourne and Metropolitan Tramways Board)
cars No. 21 and 22 were scrapped in 1935, and No. 23 was converted for use as a
track-cleaning tramcar.

The body of No. 21 was sold and used in a
house near Daylesford. The Museum recovered the remains of this tramcar in October 1994.
It is at present stored off site, for a future reconstruction project.

Btm458i.GIF (28638 bytes)Photo of
the Museum recovering the body of tram No. 21 in Daylesford in October 1994. The tram had
been built into a house during the mid 1930’s and used as a room.

Photo Carolyn Dean

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