Wednesday, 12 October 2016

The trolleybuses of Walsall

Nowadays light rail tramway systems are all the rage but no one talks about bringing back the trolleybuses. Below is a lovely film showing footage of Walsall's trolleybuses in the late 1960s in the last few years of their service before finally being withdrawn in 1970. It was one of the last UK trolleybus networks to be closed.

Of course in hindsight losing such a network (and the tram networks) was a mistake the latter though is slowly being rectified via various costly new tram schemes. You have to wonder sometimes why trolleybuses are not given a go, they can use the existing roads so the start-up costs must be much less though they would suffer from the same road congestion problems as motorbuses of course and more importantly arn't as sexy as light rail...

Anyway apart from the vehicles themselves it is an interesting look at Walsall the place too.

I haven't seen a working trolleybus in the UK (i have seen one as a boy abroad but i can't remember where!) but i have seen a number of preserved examples including one of the Walsall trolleybuses which used to be in the AMRTM collection (is it still there?)
A Walsall trolleybus with 2 motorbuses at the AMRTM

A London trolleybus at the LT Museum Depot, Acton

Trolleypoles seen here were used to collect the current from overhead wires