Around the World in Trams: Brussels 1256

Continuing our trip around the world and today we find ourselves in Brussels, Belgium for an archive image taken 50 years ago.

This photo was taken in July 1968 and shows 1256 with an unidentified trailer running on route 76. The tram itself is one of a batch built in the 1930s and was a key member of the fleet up until the 1970s when it was withdrawn from service. Several of these trams have been preserved at the Brussels Tram Museum, including 1002, 1064, 1259 and 1376.

Photograph by Nigel Pennick

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2 Responses to Around the World in Trams: Brussels 1256

  1. tram man says:

    Brussels tram network holds some fond memories for me.Mainly because i had just started as a driver at Metrolink in Sept 1991.Imagine my surprise when within a week of starting we were told our group of eight new drivers would be going to Brussels for three weeks training.
    This was of course the days before Eurostar so we caught the train to Harwich then the overnight ferry to the Hook of Holland then train to Brussels.We naturally thought we would spend the first week in the classroom including a bit of depot driving before we were allowed to venture onto the streets of Brussels.But the instructors had other ideas.We only spent two days in the classroom before being let loose onto the streets of Brussels.I can only assume they thought we had some prior tram driving experience back at Metrolink.
    We had four instructors so were split into four groups of two.We were also split between two depots and rotated round each week with different depots and instructors.I still have to pinch myself sometimes to think that i was being payed to drive trams all day round Brussels.We covered every route and every depot many times during our stay there,i was most impressed with the pre-metro where. everything in the centre goes underground.Even back in 1991 it was a wonderful integrated system,Buses Trams and underground.I think we still have a lot to learn from our European neighbours.

  2. tram man says:

    Just a bit more info on my trip to Brussels in 1991.Its amazing what 24hrs can do when you start looking at photos and reminiscing of my time in Brussels.
    Every morning we reported to one of the two depots we were working from.There was no dedicated training vehicles so we were given whatever was spare.This meant we drove a different class of vehicle almost everyday.This included the oldest single car 7000 class,also the two section 7700 class and at the time the newest three section 7900 class.
    The traction and brake controls on all three classes of vehicles were foot pedal operated.There was in effect a big accelerator pedal and a brake pedal.If my computing skills were a bit better i could upload some photos of my time in Brussels.

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