More items added to our online shop

Just in time for Christmas we are pleased to announce that we have added many more items to our online shop including many DMofT items, a wide range of transport-related books, a special five-visit ticket deal and special bundles to save you even more. Plus if you haven’t already joined you can add a membership at the same time!


1901 Aberdeen Electric Tram comes to Dundee

On Monday 26 August 2013 Dundee Museum of Transport received a very unusual delivery – a 1901 Aberdeen Electric Tram.

The Aberdeen and District Transport Preservation Trust is a charity (SCO37877) dedicated to restoring and preserving historic vehicles from the North East of Scotland and one of their projects is to restore this tram, the only one to survive, to its full glory.

Photographs of the tram and its move from Aberdeen to Dundee are featured in our Restoration gallery and you can follow the team’s progress on the Restoring the Last Aberdeen Tram website.


More tram trivia

The info here was originally posted by Brian, Doon the Toon, in the 3Js (DC Thomson’s chat board) and the Dundee Forum. Some of the info comes from the video “Dundee Trams”, released in 1996, the anniversary of the ending of Dundee’s trams.

From the 3Js

When the use of trams was finally discontinued in 1956, the oldest one still working dated back to 1900, although rebuilt on more than one occasion.

The two remaining routes, Lochee/City Centre and Ninewells/Maryfield, closed on Saturday, 20th October, 1956.

The last SCHEDULED tram (car No. 45) left NINEWELLS for Maryfield on that day.

6 cars left MARYFIELD to head for the Lochee Depot at 12.31am on Sunday, 21st October. Car 25 was the last to leave Reform Street at 12.50am. It took over an hour for the journey from Maryfield to the Lochee Depot, due to thousands of spectators lining the route. It had been decreed by the Council that there would be nothing special to mark the occasion – no closing ceremony, no official “last tram”, no souvenir tickets, etc.

In the early hours of Thursday, 25th October, the last seven cars at LOCHEE Depot, left to travel to Maryfield Depot. The last of this convoy, Car No 21, gave late night dancers heading home, a free lift.

This was the last car that carried (unofficial) passengers.

All 31 remaining cars of the Dundee fleet were transported on the back of lorries from Maryfield to a field at Marchbanks, where they were burnt. None of them was preserved.

BUT – one of Dundee’s trams, the original Steam Tram Trailer No. 21, dating from around 1893-4, has undergone restoration and is one of the most historically significant vehicles at the National Tramway Museum at Crich in Derbyshire.

From Dundee Forum

On the subject of Dundee transport, you may find the this link of interest.

Here’s a quote and a photo from that site

Dundee steam tram trailer No. 21 

The Dundee & District Tramway Company ran horse and steam trams in Dundee, Scotland. No.21 was a trailer built by GF Milnes in 1894. It was a typical steam tram trailer of the period, being a top covered double deck bogie car. Dundee Corporation took over in 1899 and electrified the system. No.21 was sold off and became a fisherman’s hut at Crombie reservoir For a full history of the tramways of Dundee, I recommend Tramways of the Tay Valley by Alan W. Brotchie. 

In 1969, the body of 21 was moved to Marton Moss near Blackpool, where restoration commenced. Two spare Milnes plate frame bogies were obtained from the Douglas cable car project and reguaged. 

Marton Moss July 27th 1979

There are more photos and details of the restoration work at that site.

That tram trailer is now fully restored and can be seen at the National Tramway Museum at Crich, Derbyshire. Here’s a photo of what it looks like now, taken from the Museum’s website page

Update 22-10-2012: Many thanks to Brian, Doon the Toon, who gave us an updated link for Dundee Steam Trailer No. 21 from the internet archive.



The first municipal public transport in Dundee was operated by “Dundee & District Tramways Co Ltd”. From 1877, these were generally horse-drawn, but by June 1885 steam cars with green and white livery were introduced. Unusually, the tram lines were publicly built and owned, although initially leased by police commissionaires to private companies. All routes came under direct municipal control in 1893, which allowed the city to adopt overhead electric lines to power the trams. Between 1899 and 1902 the tramways were fully electrified. The first electric tram in Dundee started on July 12, 1900. The route ran from High Street to Ninewells in the West via Nethergate and Perth Road with a later route running to Dryburgh in the North. The peak of the tram network was in 1932, when 79 lines operated in the city. By 1951, many of the trams had not been updated. At least a third of the stock was over 50 years old. A study lead by the Belfast transport consultant, Colonel R McCreary showed that the cost of trams compared with bus service was 26.700 and 21.204 pence per mile, respectively. He advocated abandoning the tramway system in 1952. In October 1956, the last trams were quietly taken out of service. On the evening of October 20, 1956 the last tram (No25) went to Maryfield Depot. Over 5,000 people witnessed the tram leaving the depot at 12:31 am to go to the Lochee depot. All remaining cars were reduced to scrap by burning.

The first trolleybuses in Scotland were introduced along Clepington Road in Dundee during 1912-1914. However, motor buses were gradually introduced from 1921 to supplement the tram system, and double-decker busesappeared ten years later. Electric-powered operated by “Dundee Corporation Electricity Works” were still used in parts of the city until 1961. In 1975, Dundee Corporation Transport became part of the new Tayside Regional Council. Tayside adopted a new dark blue, white and light blue livery for its buses, replacing the former dark green.

Did you ever wonder why a bus conductor gives two rings to the driver to set off?
It is because there’s a national code for bus bells:
1 ring – stop at next stop
2 rings – ready to start
3 rings – carry on at next stop, bus full
4 rings – stop, emergency

Old Dundee Transport pictures used on our banner

Unveiled on Sunday 4 April 2010 the Dundee Museum of Transport banner featured seven images from Dundee’s transport heritage.

Following requests for more details the seven original images used for the banner have now been added to our collections gallery.

If you have more photographs of Dundee’s Transport heritage please get in touch through our contact us page.