Mal Rowe wrote:
> Here's a cartoon of the time from Jeff Hook,
Thanks for that. What memories that brings back! As a schoolboy I used to
know Jeff Hook and his mate Keith Dunstan, they encouraged me to take up
journalism! Did everyone spot the hook in the tram's window? And yes what a
great caricature of Maj Gen Risson!
The date on the cartoon is 27 March 1969 which is only a fortnight before
Brisbane's trams were Clemmed. Keith Dunstan went to Brisbane at the time,
and wrote a Place in the Sun piece about their demise (its opening line
was: "Yesterday I took my last ride on a Silver Bullet."). Keith was a
trenchant tram supporter. The Sun also front-paged a photo of Clem
triumphantly driving 554 into Milton Workshops on the final night, Sunday
My family often visited Brisbane as my parents came from there to
Melbourne before I was born, and I was very familiar with its trams and
trolley buses. Even as a schoolboy I could tell some of its trams were
newer and better than Melbourne's of the time. My grandmother lived in
Butterfield Street half-way between the Bowen Bridge Road trams to
Chermside, Stafford, Grange and (till 1963) Kalinga; and the 24 Prospect
Tce trolley bus.
We moved back to Brisbane for 18 months shortly after the trams closed, so
I got to watch all the wires being torn down, the tracks paved over
(slowly) and the trams carted off to schools and playgrounds. My undying
hatred for Clem began then and has never ended, and my interest in trams as
a modern city transport system grew because of that. I was very relieved
when I returned to Melbourne (by now a high school kid) that Bolte had
retired and that 1041 soon got under way.
david mcloughlin, New Zealand
"Why is it getting so hot, and why am I in this handbasket?"