Today we head to the Lancashire coast for this latest entry into the “Still Standing!” series but its not Blackpool or Fleetwood where we end up but St Annes where an old tram shelter/waiting room is still in place.
The Lytham St Annes tram system can trace its history back to 1896 when a line opened from South Shore in Blackpool to St Annes ahead of an extension into Lytham 12 months later. Originally operated by trams fuelled by compressed coal gas the system was electrified in 1903 and then in 1905 the line was connected to the Blackpool system with through running following. The last trams ran in 1937 but despite the fact it has been over 80 years since that date there do remain some structures which are still standing.
One of these can be found in St Annes Town Centre and is a former shelter or waiting room. It is located at the junction of the A584 Clifton Drive North with St Annes Road West, leading through the square to the railway station in one direction and the pier in the other. The shelter has a handy blue plaque affixed which tells us it was erected in 1918 by the original tramway company (ahead of Lytham St Annes Corporation taking on the system four years later) and was then extended in 1984 (nearly 50 years after the last tram had run of course) when it was being used as an information centre.
It now consists of two similar and connected octagonal pavilions with the original main entrance having the words “WAITING ROOM” engraved above it which also includes the later addition of a clock. The words “BLACKPOOL ST ANNES & LYTHAM TRAMWAYS Co” are also engraved into the stonework above the windows on either side of the door. The buildings are today used as the Clock House Café.