NOSTALGIA: Trams and trolley buses ruled the chaos in Guildhall Square
I never tire of seeingÂ photographs of Guildhall Square before it was pedestrianised in the 1970s, changing the city centre forever. This is a transitional scene before the end of trams and the introduction of trolley buses.
It'sÂ 1935 and the trams had just one year left before trolley buses took over completely, although they had been replacing tramsÂ since August 4, 1934. TramsÂ were abandoned on November 10, 1936.
Above the tram, which is heading forÂ Eastney, are wires for both types of electricity pick-up. And look at the people in the foreground, all dressed smartly,Â not a bare head among them. The RAC patrolmanÂ in the white coat must have had a devil of a job controlling traffic.
'¢I can't tell youÂ too much about the picture, below,Â which shows a ketch-rigged barge in Langstone Harbour at about half-tide. In the background is the old mill, still popular with artists and photographers. Just to the left, out of shot,Â would be the Royal Oak.Â
Above the sail in the distance is the foreshore walk that takes walkers to Warblington Church and castle and onÂ to Emsworth.
The men may be oyster catchers, a commonÂ occupation at one time.
'¢Perhaps someone can tell me more about the third picture?Â It was takenÂ before 1930 as the dockyard's Semaphore Tower, in theÂ background on the right, isÂ being built after the old oneÂ was destroyed by fire in December 1913. The new building came into service in 1930.
AÂ three-funnelled cruiser is dressed overall at South Railway Jetty with sailors lining the foredeck.
Spectators throngÂ the Gosport Ferry pontoon looking towards the ship so there must have been something special going on.
I can't decipher the flagsÂ butÂ I wonder if they are Royal Standards and that a member of the royal family isÂ on board. Behind the ship are the funnels of another cruiser also dressed overall.Â
The railway viaduct from Portsmouth Harbour station cutsÂ across the harbour to the jetty.