Saturday, January 23, 2010

Leaving Randwick

I have just downloaded a video and I would love to upload it here, but there is a clear warning that I must not. Instead I have provided a direct link.

It is a less than a minute and is a silent film of racegoers leaving Sydney's Randwick Racecourse. It could be titled 'how to move eighty thousand people from the races in twenty minutes' as it is said that it was thus.

It is impressive to watch present day Melbourne trams move a large crowd after a big sporting match, such as a football grand final, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. It was even more impressive in days before trams had doors, or had doors that could be open while the tram was moving. But even in the old days, we could never have moved crowds like in this video were moved. These Sydney trams were very open and crowds could flood onto and off them very fast, plus many of them were sets of two trams hooked up together. I'll go for them being mostly coupled O class. Ben?

Click here and press play to take a look.


  1. I hear my name being called.

    All I know about Sydney trams is from when I went to the trouble of working out the difference between the different types of R class. Although I've forgotten that now...

    After a quick google (found this) I'd say you are right about the O class for the first coupled set and the solo tram, the last lot looks a bit more modern, perhaps a P class at a guess (O comes before P after all) as they look more like an R?

    I found it interesting watching the crowd. One man manages to get on the first tram but then jumps off again, and then cant get a spot on any of those following.

    Also love the pith helmets.

  2. oh yeah those pith helmets are well sexy!!! Awesome clip, it's like groundhog day!

  3. And EVERYONE wearing a hat.

    I'm influential in bringing back the Boater.


  4. Mug punters. I took my usual short cut through the TAB yesterday -from rear carpark to Douglas Parade. A race was being broadcast. I heard: "...and Bookies Nightmare coming up last..."

  5. These clips are included in Shooting Through, the Sydney Trams Museum's DVD/video that runs for over two hours and shows all of Sydney's tram routes as well as those in Newcastle.

  6. Ben, I can tell the difference between an R and an R1 now. Those wearing the pith helmets I assume are marshalls and not police. The women in the crowd get pushed forward but I can't see any of them getting on the tram.

    Fen, I see nothing sexy about pith helmets. They probably stank. Overcrowding...the perils of repeating history.

    Boaters are great RH.

    I might end up buying the dvd Victor, to watch in digestible chunks.

  7. During the 1930s the Boater became popular among FBI agents, losing a lot of its splendour. And dignity. There's photos of when they shot Dillinger, cops wearing Boaters.
    The 1920's were the Boater's loveliest.
    I'd like to have lived through the 1920s, rowboats and dancing girls.

  8. How come no one got run over - just one slip!!!My grandfather always wore a hat and coat out - long time ago

  9. I have read of a few deaths by Sydney trams MC, but that they are recorded in detail and they were big news, I think it was rare.