top of page
  • Writer's pictureJohn Woodman

Leningrad 1953

Well before the advent of global corporate suppliers of trams diverse systems evolved their own designs and fleets using local craftsmen and skills. Glasgow springs to mind immediately with its distinctive Coronation cars of the 1930s, whilst diminutive Brighton made do with locally built narrow gauge open top cars to an individual style which was continuously improved right up to the very end of that seaside resort's operation.

Further afield one can point to towns and cities which were immediately identifiable by their tram design and operation, much like London is ever identified by its RT and RM buses. Copenhagen being a classic case with home built cars unique to that capital, complete with a deep yellow and white livery. Further east in the Baltic the Soviet city of Leningrad was equally blessed with its own tram design and construction assets almost from the beginning of electric trams (much like fellow port city of Hansa Stadt Hamburg).

A deep ochre colour scheme accentuated the singular image and appearance of the trams which operated on what was an extensive urban network (now much diminished). At some point in the postwar years, an anonymous British visitor managed to take photos of Leningrad's tram types - copies of which were recently acquired for my archive and are shared here. Not being intimately familiar with the finer detail of the system's fleet they are provided as a change from the usual common garden Blackpool images which proliferate on this and other online sites.

Below : A terminus on service 34 with recently repainted two axle 1904 and matching trailer waiting for its next trip.

1930s bogie car 4061 at another turning circle and terminus showing off its 'hex' style frontage and small route box indicators with no destination blinds in evidence. New offices under construction provide a background.

Below : An early 1950s model bogie car on Service 15 with large pantograph in place of the bow collectors on previous types together with 4061 on Service 3. The extended turning circle tracks might signify the amount of peak capacity required at this terminus.

Another car 9973 of the same type this time with matching trailer. The ornate shaded fleet numerals are redolent of numeric styles applied on British tramcar fleets.

The Author welcomes information on these cars and location from any knowledgeable soul. All Images : Copyright John Woodman Archive. No details were provided on the original photographs acquired privately,

Featured Posts
bottom of page