From the moment Matlock’s Cable Tramway opened on Tuesday, March 28, 1983, it was a huge hit with residents.
So great was the demand for a ‘first ride’ on the opening day that a whopping £20 was taken in fare money alone – a huge amount considering the times.
Thereafter, the number of passengers averaged around 1,200 per day. On weekends and bank holidays, however, it could easily be double that.
The success of the trams continued for many years and – despite a loss in 1895 when a new cable was fitted – was extremely profitable for its owners and popular with people in the town.
The end of the financial year 1909/10, however, was the last time the tramway ever showed profit.
The tramway then entered a slow but steady decline until it closed on Friday, September 23, 1927.
Many records state that the tramway closed a week later – the day it was intended to close – but as a fault struck beforehand, it was not possible to say their final goodbyes to the much-loved Matlock Cable Tramway.
If you would like to find out more about the tramway, be sure to look out for Glynn Waite’s new book, The Matlock Cable Tramway, available at Bridge News, Matlock, and Peak Rail Bookshop.