Tramways navigation
LIFE AND TIMES OF THE MUNICIPAL TRAMWAYS TRUST: Before the MTT | Formation of the MTT | Building the system | Running the system | MTT & society | Decline of the system

Northern and Southern tram routes in Adelaide





Shopping changes – supermarkets arrive
In 1883, the Adelaide, Prospect, Nailsworth and Enfield Tramway Company opened a horse tram service from Rakes Road (now Regency Road), Enfield to connect with the Adelaide and Suburban Tramway Company’s at the Caledonian Hotel, North Adelaide. Shops grew up along side the Great Northern Hotel at Enfield.

Electric trams arrived in 1911. But by the mid 1950s, expansion went far beyond this area and buses had run from Enfield terminus at Irish Harp Road, (now Regency Road) to Gepps Cross and beyond from 1944. The decision was taken to establish the newly planned city of Elizabeth in 1955. Buses replaced trams from 8 December 1957, initially running on to Gepps Cross, but now also going to Salisbury and Elizabeth.

Today the scene is completely changed, with the local shops and the Great Northern Hotel replaced by a tavern and giant supermarkets serving as a major retail centre. The old 1950s Enfield terminus is now unrecognisable.

The Enfield Terminus on Main North Road at Regency Road (previously Irish Harp Road) has certainly changed since the 1950s. Photo: Keith S Kings

Trams ran to Cheltenham (left into Ward Street), and to Prospect and Enfield from this stop in O’Connell Street. Photo: Keith S Kings



The local shopping centre
Electric trams replaced horse trams, running on Prospect Road to Farrant Street, in 1911. In 1924, the line was extended to Irish Harp Road (now Regency Road), and a small shopping centre developed.

In the early post-war years, there was a major expansion of housing in the area north of the terminus, much of it by the S.A. Housing Trust. Like many other lines in the immediate post-war period, the Prospect terminus was far short of the developing housing area. Plans were made and poles erected to carry tram wires for an extension of the line to Marmion
Avenue, Kilburn.

However, the extension was cancelled and buses took over from July 20 1958. The local shopping centre at the former Prospect tram terminus still remains today much as it was in the tramway era.

A 2.4km extension of the Prospect line was started in 1951, but no track was ever laid. Photo: Keith S Kings


Munitions, races and suburban infill
Horse trams never went beyond Hill Street, North Adelaide, but electric trams reached Bowden in 1912, Croydon in 1923 and Kilkenny in 1929.

With Australia into the Second World War in 1939, munitions plants were developed at Finsbury, working day and night. In 1942, a long tramway extension was laid in a single track with a barely adequate power supply to Cheltenham to serve them.

After the war, additional power was provided, and trams were able to run special services to Cheltenham racecourse. At the same time, there was much infill of the vacant land between Kilkenny, Woodville, Rosewater and Port Adelaide with new housing. New bus services for these areas connected with trams at Woodville North and Cheltenham.

Buses replaced the trams after the last tram ran on 22 November 1958, and ran through to Port Adelaide.

View from Bowden Bridge, which carried Hawker Street and its trams over the Main North railway line. Photo: Doug A Colquhoun

On its own reservations
The Goodwood electric tramline was built in 1912 along the southern side of the then Glenelg railway to avoid a level crossing at Goodwood Road. To avoid another level crossing, a subway was built under the Hills railway at Millswood, allowing trams to Clarence Park in 1915.

In 1917, world famous planner Charles C Reade designed Colonel Light Gardens on the site of the First World War Mitcham army camp. Started in 1924, provision was made for a tram line from Clarence Park to a new Colonel Light Gardens terminus at Springbank Road using a private reservation on the east side of Goodwood Road. The line opened in 1927. A discreet toilet for crews was built at the terminus. Buses replaced the trams on 8 December 1957.

Soon afterwards, the tramway reservation became a dual roadway for the rapidly expanding 1960s motor traffic from the south. Cars had taken over!

Trams passed the shops and the old station which served the steam trains to the Bay (right) before turning off Goodwood Road towards the city. Photo: Noel F Reed

The Colonel Light Gardens terminus was in a reserve at the south-western corner of the suburb. Photo: AETA

The Colonel Light Gardens tramway reserve is now part of a widened Goodwood Road.
Photo: AETA

The Millswood subway was built to carry trams under the Main South railway line.
Photo: Noel F Reed




Bottom border
Tram Museum Home | Things to see| How to get there | School and group| Contact Tram Museum |Online Shop | Tram History |Enthusiasts Corner | About the Museum Group | Museum Members Info.

Site design: Synthetic Creative Services 0411 643 319