Cambridge in old picture postcards

Cambridge in old picture postcards

:   Michael Rouse
:   Cambridgeshire
:   United Kingdom
:   978-90-288-2960-2
:   144
:   EUR 16.95 Including VAT *

Delivery time: 2-3 weeks (subject too). The illustrated cover may differ.


Fragments from the book 'Cambridge in old picture postcards'

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89. For centuries the Cam was used for commerce, as well as rowing, Boating trips for parties as well as small rowing beats were also popular. Victoria Bridge can be seen in the background as a boating party pose, with their smiling captain, for an unknown photographer to record the occasion around 1920. A favourite trip was to Baitsbite loek and there were several popular riverside hostelnes like the 'Green Dragon' and the 'Pike and Eer at Chesterton and 'The Plough' at Fen Ditton on the way.

90. A superb photograph by William Tams of Charley Driver diving at the Sheep's Green swimming station. Charley Driver was custodian, life saver and swimming coach there from 1903 until1937. He did a dawn to dusk duty, seven days a week and during his career saved ninety lives. Jack Overhill who has swum there every day, summer or winter, for sixty-two years, including his wedding day and his diamond wedding anniversary, when his wife watched him on both occasions, described Charley Driver as 'an amazing man'. For all the talk of river pollution, Charley Driver only had three weeks illness during his period there and Jack Overhill has an even more incredible record.

91. The Granta is a tributary of the Cam and the Ouse. It rises on the Herts/Essex border and is joined by the Rhee and the Bourn Brook before reaching Cam bridge. As the ancient name for Cambridge was Grantabridge, it is claimed that the Cam should really be known as the Granta, Whichever part of the Granta or Cam this is it is an idyllic Edwardian picture of less hurried times.

92. Several of the photographs show the tramlines that were once such a feature running through the City centre and out to the railway station. The Cam bridge Street Tramways began a regular service in 1880 and the trams continued to run until 1914, although the tram lines remained in some of the streets for several years afterwards. Here one of the horse-drawn trams with its conductor and driver waits outside the railway station.

93. Horse-drawn buses like this were a riyal to the horse tram. The Cam bridge Omnibus Company began a service in 1896. The side of this bus indicates 'Chesterton, Bridge Street, Market Hili and the Railway Station' as its route. Ta counter this competition the Tramways Company ran their own horse-drawn buses. The Cambridge Omnibus Company, however, went out of business in 1902.


94. The trams soon, however, had other rivals. On 15th Apri11905 two companies began the first motor bus services in the city in competition with each other and the tram company. The Cam bridge University and Town Motor Omnibus Company Limited operated a 25 h.p. Straker Squire CE 299 seen here on the Market Hill probablyon the first day of service. Their buses were painted light blue and on the first day of operation carried 1,705 passengers between 4.30 p.m. and 9.30 p.m. at a one penny fare. Their rival company was the Cam bridge Motor Omnibus Company operating two double-decker Thorneycroft buses.

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95. It was, it seemed, the end of the line for the horse-drawn tram. Frank Keene, the local cartoonist who along with Harry Moden drew for their Cambridge Picture Postcard Company, produced a drawing of a sad and delapidated tram with only one passenger and a sleeping conductor. This card was postally used on 7th July 1905, shortly after the new motor bus service had begun.



96. Another Frank Keene card fr om 1905 suggests, however, that all was not entirely satisfactory with the new motor buses. His cartoon creation given the number CE 999 is seen running over a dog, smashing a lamp post and terrifying the passengers. In fact the companies did have a paar safety record and were eausing mueh damage to kerbs, lamp posts and other objects they came into contact with, So much so that in 1906, the next year, both eompanies had their licenees to operate withdrawn.


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97. Frank Keene was quick to point out the irony of the situation. This eard, published in 1906, is blaek bordered in the style of an 'in memoriam' notice for the Cam bridge Motor Omnibus. The horse-drawn tram is full again and bears the slogan - 'A Bit of Old Cambridge - Still Running'.

98. Just over a year later, however, in August 1907, an important figure arrived in the story of Cam bridge public transport. He was James Berry Walford and this time it did herald the eventual end for the horse-drawn tram. James Berry Walford began the Ortona Bus Company in Cam bridge despite the set backs of the other two companies. The name came from a cruise ship he had seen, The number 1 service was from the railway station where this bus is photographed, via the post office at Petty Cury to the Chesterton terminus. Buses ran every 15 minutes from 8 a.m, to 9.35 p.m. daily except Sundays. The Ortona buses, which had leaf green livery with red wheels and body trim, soon impressed everyone with their service and safety record.

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