Come with us as we take a nostalgic trip down tram memory lane...sorry - memory line!
This is my article for Magnificent Monday "Transport" which you can all link into here- Magnificent Monday: Transport.
Sorry for separating these but we have visitors and I was running late.
Trams served our major New Zealand cities well during the early half of the 1900's but were increasingly replaced with diesel buses, or electric trolleybuses from the 60's. The last public transport electric trams rode the rails in May 1964 in Wellington. But they're resilient beasts and have been popping up again; you can't keep a good tram down! Heritage tramlines have re-opened in Auckland and Christchurch providing a valuable public service moving people around our cities again without pumping out all those diesel fumes our larger cities could do without! There's something romantic about them also isn't there?
Here on the Kapiti Coast (our doorstep) is another Heritage tramway, the Kapiti Coast Electric Tramway and museum, near Mackay's Crossing, just 2 kilometres north of Paekakariki. A dedicated voluntary group of tram enthusiasts operate the tramway, staff the little ticket office, and also renovate or re-build trams needing a little TLC. Some of the trams have been almost completely re-built.
Bravo for these guys!
|All aboard! Let's go for a ride.|
|Yes, horses once pulled our city trams, during the late 1800's until electrification. |
The horse probably thinks that's not such a bad thing!
|"Hold that tram!"|
|There's always someone late!|
|The line wends through Queen Elizabeth Park, Paekakariki out to the beach.|
A monument has been erected to the more than 20,000 United States Marines who were camped at Queen Elizabeth Park and Whareora Farm from 1942 during World War 2 to deter Japanese invasion and undergo intensive training prior to heading off on their island hopping campaign.
|"Come on Jim. We'll stretch our legs along the beach!"|
|Kapiti Island backdrops the beach scenery.|
|Fay makes a beautiful rose among the sandhill wildflowers.|
|All Aboard again for the return.|
|Back at the tramway depot there is an informative display of period photographs.|
Signs, other memorabilia and even a few more trams awaiting restoration stuff the tram museum.
Kay and I had a very interesting day out with a group of Friendship Force exchange ambassadors our FF of Kapiti is hosting. Southwards Vintage Car Museum, Steam incorporated were also part of a very full day exploring our Kapiti Coast.
Marines at Mackay's Crossing - http://pspt.wellington.net.nz/uss.htm
Friendship Force - http://thefriendshipforce.org/