Film ID:
YFA 4329

THE CHANGING SCENE

1960

Visitor Tabs

Description

This is a film about the ending of the tram service in Sheffield in 1960, and its replacement with buses. It is told from the point of view of a tram driver who narrates whilst taking a tram journey across Sheffield from Millhouses to Tinsley, commenting on places on the way.

Opening title - Sheffield Transport Department presents, The Changing Scene
Produced by R. S. Bestall and G. B. Revitt, Photography by Richard L. Moore

The film begins with a journey on a tram being filmed from the driver's cab. The lime coloured tram pulls up at a stop and passengers get off. The narrator, the driver, informs us that it is the last tram ride for himself, driving for 35 years, and his mate Bill, who has been conducting for 31 years. He changes the destination to 'Weedon Street' and the conductor goes onto the top deck and flips over all the seats. Together they get off the tram and walk over to the bus shelter and read a notice on the alterations to services from October, 1960. They then get back on for the last trip. Off they go, through the reverser electric cable. It moves off along 'a private track' on the side of a road with trees on one side. It passes another tram stopped on the other line. It picks up passengers at Millhouses Park. It then shows children swimming in Millhouses open air swimming pool and a cricket match.

The tram carries on along to Springfield Road, where more passengers get on. The narration provides some history of the line. It then goes down Bannerdale Road. It passes another tram going the other way, 'The Last Tram', painted bright yellow and covered with lights, shown lit up at night. The tram continues down Abbeydale Road, stopping for passengers, collecting fares. Along the way the film shows the shops and other vehicles on the road. There is a large church up ahead on the right as it approaches the junction with London Road. On to London Road passing Roper's Motorcycle House on the left and a bit further along a pub on the left. Next is the junction with Eccleshall, with a roundabout, and this is contrasted with how it used to look with some old photos of Cemetery Road.

The tram moves on to the Moor, which is busy with shoppers and traffic. In one of the shop windows there is a new advertising gimmick, with an electric razor popping out of a box. It shows many of the new shops, including Marks and Spencer. It approaches the Moor Head, where there used to be an Information Office - an octagonal building with glass windows on all sides - where a woman is making enquiries. Then on to Pond Street bus station where it has been transferred. The tram passes the Town Hall and down Fargate. Passengers board the tram at Fitzalan Square. Then they move on past the new Castle Market and down the Wicker. A photo is shown of a tram blown in two and overturned by a bomb on the Wicker during the Second World War. Then along Savile Street and up Attercliffe Road, passing many derelict sites and under the railway bridge (Norfolk Bridge). The tram continues along a busy road, with shops on either side. The driver, narrating, comments on the old steam trams that used to run along this hill. The rails running through a cobbled street are shown.

Then on to Attercliffe Common, with shops on either side, before reaching a large steel works on the right, and the scrapyard of Thos. W. Wards Ltd., the 'graveyard' for old trams, which are shown having been cut up. There are more steel works when the tram reaches its destination at Tinsley Depot. Here it makes its last journey into the shed, accompanied by plaintive music and watched by a small boy. The driver and conductor together get off and make their way out.

The End . . . . . But not quite

The next day the driver is shown the controls for driving a bus. He moves off on the training bus, getting used to steering. He is passed out and ready to go back on the road. He teams up again with his old conductor, Bill. They get onto a number 17 bus for Dobcroft Road, Millhouses, and drive off.

The End