Cable Tramways in Australia and New Zealand
by Joe Thompson

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  • Australia/New Zealand Miscellany
  • Selected Items from The Street Railway Journal

    Melbourne - Melbourne Tramways & Omnibus Company

    Melbourne Cable Train The first Melbourne cable train is preserved at Scienceworks. Photograph used with kind permission of Andrew Cox at the Ballarat Vintage Tramway. Jul, 1998 Picture of the Month.

    I've started this section with a minimum amount of information about Melbourne's cable trams. I would happily accept any information from people who know more than I do. Thanks to Peter Vawser for supplying several useful items. There must be many people living in Melbourne who still remember the cable trams.

    Melbourne had an extensive network of cable trams, which was remarkably long-lived. Its longetivity was remarkable because most lines did not have heavy grades.

    line: Spencer Street-Richmond

    opened: 11-Nov-1885. Spencer from Bourke to Flinders, Flinders to Wellington Parade, Bridge Road to Hawthorne Bridge

    powerhouse: Bridge Road, NE at Hoddle Street. Demolished for a left turn lane.

    grip: Single-jaw side grip.

    gauge: 4'8 1/2"

    cars: dummy & trailer trains. double-ended.

    turntables: crossovers

    crossings:

    line: North Fitzroy

    opened: 02-Oct-1886.

    powerhouse: Victoria Parade, NE at Brunswick Street

    line: Victoria Bridge

    opened: 22-Nov-1886.

    powerhouse: Victoria Parade, NE at Brunswick Street

    line: Clifton Hill

    opened: 10-Aug-1887.

    powerhouse: Nicholson Street, SE at Gertrude Street

    Nicholson Street POV "What the Gripman Sees." Taken on a Nicholson Street cable dummy. A photo from the 31-March-1939 Melbourne Argus.

    line: Nicholson Street

    opened: 30-Aug-1887.

    powerhouse: Nicholson Street, SE at Gertrude Street

    line: Brunswick

    opened: 01-Oct-1887.

    powerhouse: Brunswick Road, NW at Black Street

    line: Johnston Street Bridge (Carlton)

    opened: 21-Dec-1887.

    powerhouse: Johnston Street, N side near Brunswick Street

    line: Brighton Road

    opened: 11-Oct-1888.

    powerhouse: Saint Kilda Road, SE at Bromby Street

    line: Prahran

    opened: 26-Oct-1888.

    powerhouse: Toorak Road, NW at Chapel Street

    line: North Carlton

    opened: 09-Feb-1889.

    powerhouse: Rathdown Street, SW at Park Street

    line: Toorak

    opened: 15-Feb-1889.

    powerhouse: Toorak Road, NW at Chapel Street

    line: North Melbourne

    opened: 03-Mar-1890.

    powerhouse: Queensberry Street, SW at Abbotsford Street

    line: West Melbourne

    opened: 18-Apr-1890.

    powerhouse: Queensberry Street, SW at Abbotsford Street. Converted into apartments.

    line: South Melbourne

    opened: 17-Jun-1890.

    powerhouse: City Road, S side near Cecil Street

    line: Port Melbourne

    opened: 20-Jun-1890.

    powerhouse: City Road, S side near Cecil Street

    line: Windsor-Saint Kilda Esplanade

    opened: 17-Oct-1891.

    powerhouse: Wellington Street, N side near Marlton Crescent

    Independent line

    line: Northcote

    opened: 18-Feb-1890.

    powerhouse: High Street, NE at Martin Street. Now occupied by Brown's Motors, an automobile service and repair business.

    notes:

    The entire system was operated by one company, the Melbourne Tramways & Omnibus Company. The first line opened on 11-Nov-1885. The company was founded by Francis Boardman Clapp, an American emigrant who had purchased the Victorian rights to Andrew S Hallidie's cable patents.

    The local councils of Melbourne formed the Melbourne Tramways Trust to build tracks and powerhouses for new lines, which were then leased to the Melbourne Tramways & Omnibus Company. The company also operated connecting horse tram lines. Later, other companies built electric lines.

    Engineer George S Duncan, who had built the Roslyn Tramway in Dunedin, New Zealand, the first cable tramway outside of San Francisco, was also responsible for the Melbourne Tramways & Omnibus Company's lines. His brother Alfred Duncan, who had been the engineer for the North Sydney cable car line in Sydney, Australia, later came to work on the Melbourne lines.

    The first order of grip cars and trailers was built by the John Stepenson Company of New York, NY.

    The major cable lines survived until the 1920's, after the city formed the Melbourne & Metropolitan Tramways Board (1919) to consolidate public transit. The first major line to close was the Windsor-Saint Kilda Esplanade line on 25-Aug-1925. The Richmond line closed on 29-Jun-1927. Other lines closed until the Great Depression stalled conversions. The last Melbourne cable tram operated on 26-Oct-1940.

    Here are some newspaper articles related to the closing of the cable tram operation:

  • First Cable Tram for Museum (Launceston, Tasmania Examiner, February 15, 1939)
  • Melbourne's Last Cable Tram Makes Last Trip (Adelaide, South Australia Mail, October 26, 1940)
  • Last Cable Tram/Final Appearance (Townsville Daily Bulletin, October 29, 1940, 1940)
  • Cable Tram for Museum (Melbourne, Victoria Argus, November 29, 1940)

    Northcote was built as an independent line but was eventually taken over by the Melbourne & Metropolitan Tramways Board.

    Portland Cable Trams Inc has restored a Melbourne cable tram, which it operates with Diesel power. The grip car is a reproduction, but the trailer, Number 95, is original. They started service in 2002. The track is 3.7 kilometers.

    Melbourne conduit Mal Rowe took this unique photograph inside the recently uncovered Melbourne cable conduit. May, 2007. Photo by Mal Rowe. All rights reserved.

    In May, 2007, Mal Rowe reported in the TramsDownUnder Yahoo Group that road work in Abbotsford Street, North Melbourne had uncovered cable tram tracks of the West Melbourne line. Mal reported that "The track, the slot, and even a glimpse of the yoke and tunnel are all there to see. The paving blocks are red-gum blocks ... still in good condition 70 years after being buried and who knows how long after being laid!" Thanks to Bill Bolton for pointing out Mal's report. Thanks to Mal for the use of two of his photographs.

    Mal followed up with a report that the section of track may be added to the Victorian Heritage Register. Some part of it may be conserved.

    Melbourne right of way Mal Rowe took this photograph of cable tram tracks discovered under Abbotsford Street in North Melbourne. The white stripes, cleaned up by Mal to make them more visible, are marble markers that signalled the gripman to drop the rope. May, 2007. Photo by Mal Rowe. All rights reserved.

    The Melbourne Public Transport Corporation Photographic Archive has many wonderful pictures of cable trams.

    Visit David Hoadley's Trams of Australia for information about all kinds of Australian trams.

    Clive Mottram's Tramway and Trolleybus Images, has a nice collection of transit-related photos in Australia. Thanks to Clive for providing some useful information for this article.

    There is an interesting site about an existing Australian funicular, the Katoomba Scenic Railway (which is not in Melbourne).

    MELBOURNE TRAMWAY CABLES.

    From Railway World, February, 1898. Volume VII, Number 2.

    In our February issue of last year mention was made of the excellent record of a cable made by Messrs. George Cradock and Company on the Collins Street line of the Melbourne Tramway and Omnibus Company. The cable had been in constant service for 52 weeks and 14 days, the speed being 10 miles per hour. This record was a most creditable one, as the average length of service of cables previously in use was 16 weeks and 1/3 of a day. We are now informed that one of Messrs. Cradock's ropes has been working on the Bourke Street line for 90 weeks and 2 days, during which time it has run 111,712 miles. The rope has now been withdrawn. Two previous ropes of other makers worked respectively 29 weeks and 1 day, and 35 weeks and 3 days, and the best record hitherto made on this line is 54 weeks and 66,395 miles. The length of the rope is 18,000 ft., with a circumference of 3 3/4 in. It was specially made for cable tramwav work from Messrs. Cradock and Company's patent improved crucible steel.

    North Melbourne Gertrude Street Cable Winding House, photographed in 2001 by Bob Murphy. He believes the building is still used as Central Control. Thanks to Bob for the picture.

    North Melbourne A view of the North Melbourne Winding House, photographed in 2001 by Bob Murphy. He points out that it emphasizes that trams still run on the old cable routes. This is an A class tram. Thanks to Bob for the picture.

    North Melbourne Another view of the North Melbourne Winding House, Queensberry Street, SW at Abbotsford Street, photographed in 2001 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture.

    North Melbourne Another view of the North Melbourne Winding House, also photographed in 2001 by Bob Murphy. Note the stump of the chimney in the rear. Thanks to Bob for the picture.

    North Carlton The North Carlton Winding House, photographed in November, 2008 by Bob Murphy. Bob reports that it "is pretty intact though there is an apartment house in the centre of the old tramshed. The facade is intact. The engine house is untouched except for a bitumen floor which is used for parking by the apartment dwellers. The North Carlton engine house and tramsheds went into operation on 9 FEB 1889. Unusually there was only one cable out of that engine house at 13,617' long." Thanks to Bob for the picture. February, 2009 Picture of the Month.

    North Carlton/2 Another view of the North Carlton Winding House, photographed in November, 2008 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture.

    North Carlton/3 Another angle of the North Carlton Winding House, photographed in November, 2008 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture.

    North Carlton tram shed The North Carlton Tram Shed, next to the Winding House, photographed in November, 2008 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture.

    Collins Street Collins Street with two cable trams. Photographed by William Henry Jackson in 1895. (Source: World's Transportation Commission Photograph Collection (Library of Congress) Call Number: LOT 11948, no. 660).

    gripmans view The view from the gripman's position on a Melbourne cable dummy at the Bylands Tram Museum. Photographed in February, 2006 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture. All rights reserved.

    In February, 2006, Bob Murphy visited the Melbourne Tram Museum in Bylands near Melbourne. The museum is operated by the Tramway Museum Society of Victoria.

    dummy and trailer A beautifully preserved Melbourne cable dummy and trailer at the Bylands Tram Museum. Photographed in February, 2006 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture. All rights reserved.

    dummy and trailer from rear A rear 3/4 view of Melbourne cable dummy and trailer 299 at the Bylands Tram Museum. Note 299's Bombay roof. Photographed in February, 2006 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture. All rights reserved.

    trailer from rear A closer rear view of Melbourne cable trailer 299 at the Bylands Tram Museum. I like the colors and lettering used on the rear dash. Photographed in February, 2006 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture. All rights reserved.

    replica horse tram Car 253 is a replica of a Melbourne cross-bench horse tram, built on an original cable tram truck. The Zoological Gardens horse tram line operated until 1923. This tram, pulled by horses, was used to carry guests at Bylands before the electrical overhead was in place. Photographed in February, 2006 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture. All rights reserved.

    cable hauling wagon A unique item preserved at the Bylands Tram Museum is this steel wheeled wagon used for hauling reels of cable from the ship to the cable tramway powerhouse. Photographed in February, 2006 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture. All rights reserved.

    cable hauling wagon/2 Another view of the steel wheeled wagon used for hauling reels of cable from the ship to the cable tramway powerhouse. Photographed in February, 2006 by Bob Murphy. Thanks to Bob for the picture. All rights reserved.

    real estate ad A real estate ad instructs those interested in the Hoffman Tramway Estate, Brunswick to "Take Brunswick Electric Tram from William Street, City, DIRECT TO ESTATE, OR Brunswick Cable Tram, to Corner Sydney Road and Dawson Street (Brunswick Town Hall)." Melbourne Argus, 03-October-1925. No thumbnail.

    Fredrick S Smith Thanks to Stuart James for sharing this photograph: "...the man in the middle is Fredrick S. Smith, (my great-grandfather) taken in either the Gertrude Street or St Kilda Road engine house of the Melbourne Tram and Omnibus Company. It turned up recently when I was helping my father sort out some old family photos."

    Stuart goes on to report that his great-grandfather "...was appointed to Psyche Bend in Mildura in 1897 as engineer at the pump station. However due to family pressure (no pun intended) he did not take up this remote position. I have a copy of the letter from Monash Anderson, Consulting Civil, Hydraulic and Mechanical Engineers and Surveyors, dated Feb 12th 1897 confirming, with regret his withdrawal. Before working for the Melbourne Tram and Omnibus Co. he was employed as engineer by the Insurance Company's Fire Brigade in Melbourne. He resigned from the tramways when it became clear that the steam and cable era was in decline (to avoid the indignity of being sacked) and worked for various other firms in Melbourne, including the Avery Scale Company ... While working at the St Kilda Road winding house and living in South Yarra he would often walk to and from work through Fawkner Park. The story goes that he had been threatened on a few occasions by thugs, so reflecting his sea going back ground, he made up a short truncheon from cable, leather plaited complete with wrist strap; I am no sure if he ever had to use it or not." Stuart's grandmother gave him the truncheon. All rights reserved.

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    Sydney - New South Wales Government Tramways

    Sydney claims to be the only Australian city to have used horse, steam, cable, and electric traction.

    line: North Sydney

    North Sydney cable tram North Sydney cable tram. Smaller version. Photo courtesy of Ric Francis. December, 2001 Picture of the Month.

    opened: 22-May-1886. Alfred Street from Milsons Point Wharf to Junction, to Blue, Miller to Ridge Street

    extended: 17-Jul-1893. Miller to Falcon Street to Lane Cove Road (later Pacific Highway) at Crows Nest

    powerhouse: Miller and Ridge.

    grip: single-jaw side

    gauge: 4'8 1/2"

    cars: dummy & trailer trains. double-ended. Some trains carried two trailers.

    turntables: crossovers. Turntable at Miller and Ridge removed when line was extended.

    crossings: N/A

    North Sydney ferry terminus North Sydney ferry terminus at Milsons Point. Cable tram in foreground. Photo courtesy of Ric Francis.

    North Sydney tram North Sydney cable train. Photo courtesy of Ric Francis.

    line: King Street (aka Ocean Street)

    King Street cable tram King Street cable trams. Photo courtesy of Ric Francis.

    opened: 19-Sep-1894. King Street from Darling Harbour, Saint James Road, College, Boomerang and William Streets, Bayswater Road (outbound) and New South Head Road to Ocean Street, Edgecliff. Upper William Street South (inbound).

    powerhouse: Rushcutter's Bay, adjacent to Rushcutters Bay Park.

    grip: single-jaw side

    gauge: 4'8 1/2"

    cars: dummy & trailer trains. double-ended. Grip cars and trailers carried air brakes starting in 1895. The compressor was driven off of the axle of the grip car.

    turntables: crossovers

    crossings: N/A

    notes: Melbourne had a comprehensive system of cable tramways, but Sydney had two isolated lines in places where no other form of traction was practical.

    The North Sydney line connected the township with the main ferry wharf for the North Shore, climbing a steep rise from the waterfront. The severity of the grade led to the choice of cable traction rather than steam or electricity.

    "The North Shore cable tramway was formally opened yesterday by His Excellency Lord Carrington with considerable ceremony, the proceedings being witnessed by several thousand spectators. The new line is about a mile and a half in length, extending from Molson's Point to the St. Leonards public reserve. The event is one of considerable importance, not only because ot the improved facilities it gives for communication in the rapidly growing suburb of North Shore, but also because it marks the introduction of a new system of locomotion, this being the first cable tramway opened in the colony." -- North Sydney Line Opens (Melbourne Argus, Monday, May 24 1886)

    George S Duncan's brother Alfred, also an engineer, worked on the North Sydney system.

    North Shore stop changes
    From the Sydney Morning Herald, 22-October-1886.

    North Shore closure
    From the Sydney Morning Herald, 23-October-1886.

    The cable line operated successfully, but the Depot to Crows Nest extension was converted to electricity in 1898, and the rest of the line to Milsons Point on 10-Feb-1900. 13 North Sydney grip cars and 6 trailers were transferred to the King Street line. Five of the grip cars were converted to use the King Street grip and the rest were converted to be open trailers. Seven more trailers were transferred in 1903.

    Maryhill cable tram A fly-wheel for the Ocean Street cable tramway, at the Hudson Brothers' Works in Clyde. I like the dude in the bowler. from "Sydney's New Tramway. The Ocean-Street Cable Line.", Australian Town and Country Journal, 11-August-1894. December, 2011 Picture of the Month.

    powerhouse interior The interior of the powerhouse of the Ocean Street cable tram line. From "Cable Trams in Sydney.", Australian Town and Country Journal, 06-July-1895.

    In 1890, when a new tram line was proposed along King Street to replace a horse omnibus, there was some controversy about what form of traction it should use. It was argued that electric lines were cheaper to build, but others argued that electric traction was still in an experimental stage, and that poles supporting the trolley wires would block the street. On the other hand, cable traction had proved its worth in Melbourne and North Sydney.

    From The Street Railway Journal, November, 1893. Volume IX, Number 11.

    The new cable line in Ocean Street, Sydney, New South Wales, has just been completed.

    "The new cable tramway from Erskine-street, Darling Harbor, to Ocean-street, Woollahra, a distance of about two miles, was opened for traffic to-day. The line, which traverses King-street and opens up the eastern suburbs around the harbor, has been a very costly one, 160,000 having been expended upon it." -- Sydney/King Street Line Opens (Adelaide Advertiser, Thursday, September 20, 1894)

    King Street grip cars and trailers were fitted with air brakes soon after the line opened in 1895. Reservoirs were recharged by compressors driven by the wheels.

    In 1898, the speed of the King Street City (inner) cable increased from 8 to 9 miles per hour. Speed changes were not a common occurence in the industry, as it required modifications to the driving equipment.

    An electric line to Rose Bay connected with the King Street cable line. The cable cars hauled the electric cars to Darling Harbour. King Street was electrified by March, 1903, but the last cable tram did not run until 14-Jan-1905 because of extensive tests to make sure that electric operation was safe on the gradients, and delays in the delivery of new electric equipment.

    Ultimo Powerhouse The Ultimo powerhouse supplied many of the electric lines that replaced Sydney's cable tram lines. From "The Sydney, Australia, Tramway System.", The Electrical World and Enginee4, 06-December-1902.

    The Ballarat Vintage Tramway preserves car 12. Car 12 started life as North Sydney cable trailer 18. The Electric Supply Company of Victoria purchased 12 trailers in 1905 and had them rebuilt as electric single-truck California cars. Car 12 retired by 1935 and became part of a home. She was rescued in 1990 and is under restoration.

    Thanks to Ric Francis and Bill Bolton for providing photos and information for this article.

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    Dunedin - Cable Tramways in Dunedin

    Maryhill cable tram An 1895 view of Maryhill Tramway car 9 with unusual roof and windows. Photograph by William Henry Jackson. Thanks to Len Foley for pointing out that this was the Maryhill and not the Roslyn line. (Source: World's Transportation Commission Photograph Collection - Library of Congress. CALL NUMBER - LOT 11948, no. 688 )

    I'm still collecting information about Dunedin cable trams, so I thought I would throw in a couple of pictures to tide me over. Dunedin is important because it had both the first and the last Hallidie-type cable trams outside of San Francisco.

    Maryhill cable tram Another 1895 view of Maryhill Tramway car 9 with the members of the World Transportation Commission. (Source: World's Transportation Commission Photograph Collection - Library of Congress. CALL NUMBER - LOT 11948, no. 686)

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    Dunedin and Roslyn Tramway Company

    line: Rattray Street

    opened: 11-Nov-1885. Rattray Street from MacLaggan Street to Highgate

    extended: ??-???-1900. Rattray Street from MacLaggan Street to Princess Street.

    extended: ??-Aug-1906. Highgate to Frasers Road

    powerhouse: At Highgate. Replaced by powerhouse in the Kaikorai Valley. Replaced by new powerhouse at Highgate

    grip: Single-jaw side grip, wheel operated. Later lever operated.

    gauge: 3'6"

    cars: open dummies with one glassed-in end, double-ended. Also a coal car and a water car to supply powerhouse.

    turntables: crossovers

    crossings:

    Roslyn tram A Roslyn cable tram near the pull curve next to Saint Joseph's Cathedral. February, 2006 Picture of the Month.

    notes:

    The Roslyn Tramway was the first Hallidie-type cable tramway built outside of San Francisco. Its engineer, George S Duncan, created two important devices: the pull curve and the slot brake. The pull curve allowed cars to climb the curve by Saint Joseph's Cathedral. The slot brake allowed cars to descend the steep hills more safely. (See How Do Cable Cars Work? for more information)

    The line was built as a single track with passing loops. The down-bound cars dropped rope and coasted through the passing loops. The line was double-tracked in 1884. The cable ran at 7.95 miles per hour.

    The line was replaced by buses on 26-October-1951.

    Roslyn tram 95 Roslyn cable tram 95. Photo by Peter Ehrlich. All rights reserved. September, 2005 Picture of the Month.

    In May, 2005 Peter Ehrlich, recently retired Muni motorman, visited Australia and New Zealand. At the Ferrymead Heritage Museum, he found Roslyn cable tram number 95, from Dunedin.

    Roslyn tram 95 Another view of Roslyn cable tram 95. Photo by Peter Ehrlich. All rights reserved.

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    Mornington Tramway

    Greetings From Mornington The Mornington Extension.

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    Wellington - Kelburn Cable Car

    Kelburn cable car The Kelburn Cable Car, a funicular in Wellington, NZ.

    The Kelburn Cable Car, a funicular, has operated since 22-Feb-1902. I'll write more about it another day. In the meantime, visit the Wellington Cable Car Museum site to learn more. In late 2005, they received grip car 3, which had been restored to its 1905 appearance. Grip Car 1, which was alread on display at the museum, and Grip Car 2, which is housed at the Wellington Tramway Museum at Mackays Crossing, Paekakariki, both look the way they did in the 1970's.

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    Penang Hills Funicular Railway

    Penang Hills Penang Hills car on the lower section.

    Penang Hills A 1950's view of cars at the passing loop in the upper line.

    Penang Hills A 1999 view of cars at the upper passing loop.

    Ric Francis has written a book about the Penang Hills Funicular Railway. Thanks to Ric for providing the illustrations and the information about the line.

    The Malaysian island of Penang was administered by the British Empire as part of the Straits Settlements (Penang, Malacca, and Singapore). The lowlands around the port of Penang are hot and humid. British administrators and colonists wanted to get away to the higher, cooler Penang Hill, and decided that a funicular railway was the way to get there. A line was completed in 1906, but it didn't work and the company that built it went under.
    Penang Hills original car Postcard view of the cars of the original, unsuccessful Penang Hills Railway.

    The Straits government organized a new project after the First World War. The Penang Hills Funicular Railway was designed by Arnold R Johnson, who had studied funiculars in Switzerland. The funicular opened to the public on 21-Oct-1923, and was immediately popular, both because it provided access to the cooler upper air and because of the beautiful views.

    Until 2010, the Penang Hills Funicular Railway had two independent sections. The upper and lower sections each had two counterbalanced 40-passenger cars. Each car had automatic brakes which would apply if the cable broke or otherwise lost tension. Each section had a passing loop in the middle and intermediate stops. A winding house at the top of each section was electrically driven.

    The funicular carries both passengers and freight in special wagons (cars in American).

    The line is currently owned by the Penang Government and operated by the George Town City Electricity Supply Department.

    After an eight-month shutdown in 2003, caused by an equipment failure, the line received a RM2.5mil rebuilding. After delays caused by difficulty in locating materials, the line reopened in August, 2004.

    On Sunday, 24-Apr-2005, a load of tourists was trapped on the hill for three hours when a brake malfunctioned. Later that week, the State Tourism Development and Environment Committee requested RM40mil for a thorough overhaul of the system, citing its importance to tourism.

    Ric Francis reports that on 21-February-2010, the line made its last run in its original form. The upgraded system will run directly from the top to the bottom. The work is scheduled to be complete by 28-September-2010, but people regard that date with skepticism.

    An 07-May-2011 report in the FuniMag photoblog says that the rebuilt line reopened 25-April-2011.

    Ric Francis and Colin Ganley have published a book, Penang Trams, Trolleybuses and Railways. It is a detailed history of public transit Penang. I particularly enjoyed the drawing which illustrated the liveries used at different times. This is on-topic for this site because of the Penang Hills Railway, a funicular.

    If you are interested in reading this enjoyable book, it is available from Areca Books.

    Penang Hills Looking down the Penang Hills incline.
    Penang Hills at bottom station Penang Hills car with baggage wagon at bottom station, before the rebuilding.
    Penang Hills A modern car, pushing a freight wagon, approaches the tunnel on the upper section, before the rebuilding.
    Penang Hills at bottom station 2011 Penang Hills car at bottom station, after the rebuilding. 2011 photograph.
    Penang Hills at passing loop 2011 Penang Hills cars at the passing loop, taken from the other car. 2011 photograph.
    Penang Hills at old passing loop 2011 An old Penang Hills car at the currently unused old lower passing loop, taken from a new car. 2011 photograph.
    Penang Hills at old middle station 2011 The former Penang Hills middle station. The old track on the right holds an old car which is on display. Note the sharp angle of the new track on the right. 2011 photograph.
    Penang Hills at top station 2011 Penang Hills car at the top station. 2011 photograph.
    Penang stamp In 2011, Malaysia issued the Highland Tourist Spot set of stamps, including one for the Penang Hills Funicular Railway.

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    Selected Items from The Street Railway Journal


    Victoria Street Cable Life

    From The Street Railway Journal, January, 1893. Volume IX, Number 1.

    A Cable made on the Lang lay, recently removed from the Victoria street line, Melbourne, Australia, made a total of 113,951 miles, having been in operation 101 weeks and four days, running at different times at the rate of nine and ten miles per hour. The best record that had been made on this line previously, was a total of 90,193 miles in eighty-five weeks and two days. This record of 113,951 miles is one of the best ever made by any rope, and fully justifies the claims of the manufacturers, Messrs. George Cradock & Co., Wakefield, Eng., for this make of rope.

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