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The Last Horse Car
The Depot (1)

The Depot (2)

Liverpool History

The Litherland Tramway part 1


The title may be a little misleading as Litherland did not actually own a tramway system of its own, but was the northern extremity of the Bootle and North Docks lines of the Liverpool network. The Litherland end of the line ran for 3/4 of a mile along Linacre Road from the Bootle boundary, to a terminus at the junction with Bridge Road. This short stretch was to become noteworthy in the story of Liverpool Tramways as it was the last horse-car route to run, not converting to electric operation until August 1903, eight months after the rest of the system changed over.

area map

The line was later extended down Bridge Road to Wellington Road alongside Seaforth & Litherland railway station. This short tramway was not without features of interest (at least to a tramway enthusiast) - single track with passing loops, a depot which was to stable the last Liverpool horse cars, and there were many local landmarks along the way - Johnson's dyeworks, the Matchworks, Linacre Mission, the "sausage works", and the Lift Bridge, before arriving at the railway station where not only LMS trains could be seen but also those of the Liverpool Overhead Railway.

Starting at the northern end of the line, the terminus from the 1930s until closure, was in Wellington Road. This was a short road at the side of Seaforth & Litherland Station which continued south as a footpath or as it was known locally, the "cinder path".

Bridge Road terminus Bridge Road

For a larger version of the postcard and
other views of the area, click on the notice.


Prior to the 1930s, the terminus was in Bridge Road by the railway bridge, with a passing loop situated by the Railway Hotel (above left). The view on the right shows Bridge Road when the terminus was still up at the top on Linacre Road. The Railway Hotel is the first building on the left. Climbing up Bridge Road, the next loop was encountered at Beach Road. Single track then resumed to take us past the "half-timbered" shops, until just beyond Ruthven Road a comparatively long double-track section swept round onto Linacre Road, past the Richmond "sausage works" and ending by Sefton Avenue. Before 1910 the line terminated at this end of Linacre Road.
Back onto single track and a fairly level road until Palmerston Drive, where Linacre Road begins to descend past the depot, outside of which there was a passing loop. This started by the Stockwell Mount pub and closed into single track at the railway bridge.
Beyond the bridge, Linacre Road narrows even more as it bends left past the Catherine public house. It then runs level again and marginally wider, a short passing loop was to be found between Lily Road and Violet Road.
Single track again past the Mission on the left and the Matchworks on the right (now Hornby Flats), as far as Longfield Road, where a final loop stretched to Chelsea Road. A short single line ran for just one block to Lander Road where the track then became double for the rest of the journey into Liverpool. Single track would not be encountered again until Cazneau Street and the city centre.

Bridge Road
map - Linacre Road

Other Litherland Tramway pages and links:


for more about Liverpool Trams visit
Ron Smith's Liverpool Tram Website
and try the database at:

to learn more about Litherland,
try Litherland Town Website - contains some good photos
as does John Bythell's Photography Website

for information on other systems and model tramways try:
The Tramway & Light Railway Society
The Light Railway Transit Association
Merseyside Tramway Preservation Society
Merseyside Transport Trust
Electric Lines of Southern Ontario

Bibliography: Liverpool Transport Volumes 1-4
by J.B.Horne & T.B.Maund