Ipswich Corporation Tramways

The photos of Motorman No 2 and Conductor No 86 below indicate that staff wore a traditional double-breasted tunic with two waist pockets and two rows of five brass buttons, presumably bearing the full corporation title around the rim (see link). Two buttons also appear to have been worn on each of the leather cuffs. A staff number was worn on the left-hand upright collar and individual metal initials ‘I C T’ on the right.

Caps were of the taller military style with a glossy peak and bore a brass script-lettering badge, either ‘Motorman’ or ‘Conductor’ (see below). Although the motorman below is wearing what appears to be a round cap badge above his ‘Motorman’ badge, this is almost certainly not a municipal badge. There are many photographic examples from this period which show that ex-soldiers frequently wore the cap badges of their former military units, presumably to show that they had ‘done their bit’. The fact that Motorman No 2 is also wearing a medal ribbon, and refers to himself as “your old and sincere Pal” suggests that this may be the case here.

Female staff - employed during the Great War - wore long, thigh-length single-breasted jackets (with matching long skirts). The jackets had two deep thigh-level pockets, a high waist band and large lapels; the latter bore a staff number and ‘ICT’ initials. Straw Boater hats were worn with a material ribbon bearing the usual brass, script-lettering cap badge.

Inspectors’ uniform details are currently unknown.

Motorman No 2 - photographic postcard dated 4th July 1918. Note the white rain cover (for Summer use) and the two buttons on each sleeve. The message on the back reads “To George Knight with my very best and sincerest wishes and the best of luck. From your old and sincere Pal, Alex, Ipswich 4/7/18”.

Conductor No 86 - photo undated. The text on the reverse of the photo reads “Mr. Terry Maile of 55, Ranelagh Road, Ipswich in the old double breaster uniform as was worn for many years on the old trams and trolleys, up to the present day open neck tunic being introduced.” With thanks to Ipswich Transport Museum (see link).

Conductress Mary Ann lambert (Employee No 121) - photo undated but very probably taken during the Great War. Miss Lambert was born in Lavenham, Suffolk on 13th July 1892, her family later moving to 38 Friars St, Ipswich. With thanks to Ipswich Transport Museum (see link).

Brass script-lettering cap badges and a cash bag buckle, all from the collection of Ipswich Transport Museum (see link).

Ipswich shield cap/collar badge - nickel. This badge was worn in the ‘corporation transport’-era, and was very probably introduced after the demise of the tramway system.