Shipley Glen Tramway
The Shipley Glen Cable Tramway is the oldest working cable tramway in Great Britain (cliff lifts excepted) having been built in 1895 to carry people up to Brackenhall Green (aka Shipley Glen). It is nearly a quarter-mile in length and the woodland ride provides a pleasant alternative to the steep path.
At the top it is only a short walk to the Cafe and The Old Glen House pub and a bit further to the Brackenhall Countryside Centre plus the rocks and woods of Shipley Glen. The bottom station allows access to Roberts Park and River Aire, the Waterbus on the Canal, and the delights of Saltaire with Salt's Mill and its famous Hockney Gallery.
The Tramway is open most weekend afternoons throughout the year. As well as rides on the open trams, there is a small souvenir shop at the top selling sweets and ice-cream plus a replica Edwardian shop at the bottom displaying and vending pure nostalgia.
The museum at the bottom station has been reopened and displays photos and memorabilia of the tramway and Shipley Glen along with words, pictures and memories of the tramway and Shipley Glen in a display named 'The Ride of Life' The museum opens weekends and bank holidays when the tramway is open and entry is free of charge.
The Tramway has a gauge of 20" and there are two tracks with a pair of trams on each line. The maximum gradient is 1 in 7. Opened to the public on May 18th 1895, the Tramway was powered by a Suction Gas Engine, then Town Gas and then Oil (1915) before being converted to electric in 1928. The operator was a Sam Wilson who erected several other rides on the Glen.
After a short closure, the line reopened in summer 1969 and continued until early 1981 when a right-of-way dispute prevented operations. The Tramway was saved by members of the Bradford Trolleybus Association with the financial assistance of Bradford Council. Operation continues using unpaid volunteer help.
This content was taken from the Tramway website