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Tramways of Austria (part 2)

A talk by John Piggott and Nick Britton, 18th April 2005

On Monday 18th April 2005 John Piggott and Nick Britton treated us to part two of their series of talks on the tramways of Austria. This presentation dealt in depth with the tramways of Vienna.

This presentation dealt in depth with the tramways of Vienna and comprised a route-by-route look at some of the extensive city tramways, including a number of depots and works cars. These views were supplemented by historic slides from the Ron Copson collection, dating from the 1950’s and 1960’s. These included many 2-axle cars, the Ex New York 3rd Avenue cars, and early D class articulated cars. Former route 106 was covered with a number of slides. This route had been operated by a single 2-axle tram, usually 2351. Another interesting slide showed 16 B class cars lined up on the Reichsbrucke for load testing. The situation was brought up to date with pictures of 5 and 7 section ULF (ultra low floor vehicles), which are steadily taking over from the E 1 class articulated sets.

The final part gave us views of the fascinating 500mm gauge Vienna Old People’s Hospital Food Railway, which is operated by 3 battery and 2 diesel locomotives over a complex track layout. Trains operate from the central kitchen area to take food to the various blocks set in the extensive grounds. Special sidings allow the train to shunt wagons close to the delivery points. Trains operate three times a day serving the main meals. Food containers are mounted on 4 wheel wagons and a brakeman rides on a raised platform on the rear wagon. The operation is extremely slick and our speakers said they had to work hard to get the excellent photographs of the operation

This was a most interesting presentation and we will look forward to the next talk from the "Bag Boys", as they like to be known.

John Laker, 21/4/05

London Area – 18th April 2005

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