Belfast Tram Ride – in 1901!!

And here’s another thing. UTube. I first clocked this around the time of the Dublin Riots, but that Google video sent me back to look again. The most fascinating thing that came up was this Mitchell and Kenyon clip from May 1901, of a horse drawn tram ride down Royal Avenue in Belfast, eventually ending up somewhere that looks like the Albert Clock.

The most fascinating detail are the eight blokes parading slowly by the side of the road advertising a film in the Ulster Hall.

  • Fascinating stuff, we’re really entering an era now where we have good quality moving images which are outside of living memory.

  • Wow thats fantastic, there was an amazing documentary on some months back where they found all this fantastic footage similar to this different cities. They would film the towns and the people and then show them in a central venue, people loved it cos they had never seen themselves like that.

  • Mick Fealty

    This is the same company. It’s a shame the faces of the individuals are so cloudy on this clip, since I’m sure someone’s great granny or grandad is walking out there in the early 20th Century sunshine.

  • James D

    I bet they run more often than Metro!

  • mickhall

    Great stuff.

  • I thought it was very significant that Dublin brought the trams back (the Luas) for the first time in over 50 years. Belfast should do the same and get rid of those horrible pink buses. Tram is a lovely way to travel.

  • Stephen Copeland

    I cannot really tell, because the picture is a bit unclear, but the ‘trams’ look more like horse-drawn omnibuses, rather than trams. I cannot see any rails on the ground, and surely these are a prerequisite of a tram?

    I love the Mitchell and Kenyon films – they are a real historical gem. I wonder are they available on DVD, or are there any plans to release them?

  • Mick Fealty

    I think that’s just lack of definition Stephen. Once or twice I think you can just make out the thin outline of one of them.

  • smcgiff

    ‘Once or twice I think you can just make out the thin outline of one of them.’

    Yip.

  • smcgiff

    I wonder why the guy who was running (approx half way through) was in such a hurry? I’m sure it was important enough to him at the time, but I think there’s a lesson there somewhere.

  • Harry

    smcgiff wrote:
    “I wonder why the guy who was running (approx half way through) was in such a hurry? I’m sure it was important enough to him at the time, but I think there’s a lesson there somewhere.”

    What, ‘never mind about getting your wages ‘cos someone might be looking at you in a 100 years time and think you deluded and short-sighted’?

  • Nah he was probably Irelands #1 athlete of the time in training for the olympics in the latest most modern sports science training gear money could buy…

  • Canadian

    Great video!!!

  • Brendan, Belfast

    amazing – it is hard to make out the shape of the streets i find, it was difficult to imagine that street scene was Royal Avenue. a lovely moment.

  • Busty Brenda

    BRILLIANT!!

  • Penelope

    very cool 🙂

  • abucs

    very cool indeed.

    A few years back an uncle of mine passed on to me a rail ticket from Belfast to Warrenpoint.

    Originally dated from 1914 i think.

    Wonder if it would be worth anything now ?

  • darth rumsfeld

    I’m sure I recognised many current members of the Ulster Unionist party staggering down the steps of the Ulster reform Club