Liverpool Car 4

Liverpool Car 4 Decorated for the 1907 Pageant

In early August 1907, over three days, a pageant was held in Liverpool in Commemoration of the 700th anniversary of the granting of the Royal Charter to the city by King John in 1207, and which included variety entertainments, a visit of the Fleet and a display of fireworks. For its part, Liverpool Corporation Tramways decorated twenty trams which then ran in public service. To achieve this they ran a competition between the depots, one section for the day staff, one for the night, with prizes of 50/-, 30/- and 15/- for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes for each section. Harry Cundell of Dingle depot won the daytime first prize for a car showing the history of the steamship, with Smithdown Road and Litherland running up. Night foreman James Griffiths of Green Lane depot won the night-time prize with Walton and Dingle as runners up.

Our postcard from an unknown local publisher was posted in September 1907 from Old Swan, Liverpool (the destination on the tram's indicator) to Seacombe on the other side of the Mersey. It shows Liverpool car 4 which was the Green Lane depot winner. At the front is a model of a thatched cottage and the car bears the inscription "Success to the Pageant" on the front and in coloured lights on the side "Success to Liverpool"

Car 4 at that time was new. It was one of the last "Bellamy" cars to be built with opening panels in the roof. It was one of 21 built by the corporation in 1907 at their Lambeth Road works. They had Westinghouse 35hp type 200 motors and Westinghouse type 90 controllers. They were fitted with 7ft wheelbase trucks similar to a Brill 21E but assembled at Lambeth Road. Car 4 seated 22 downstairs and 38 on top. In total there were some 444 "Bellamy" type cars in Liverpool and despite their age some survived until after World War 2.

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