The Twickenham Museum
Exhibitions : Road Rail and River

Trolleybuses ran from 1931 to 1962

The starting point for the first local trolleybus route was at Twickenham Junction, seen here in 1931

In 1922, Twickenham UDC received notification from the London United Tramway Company (LUT) that they were considering discontinuing trams on the track from Twickenham to Richmond bridge. The proposed trolleybus replacement came in for much criticism and delay but trams finished on this section in 1924. Part of this criticism was to do with the required turning circle. This was unlike the trams which could be driven to-and-fro without turning.

A 667 trolleybus en route to Hampton Court in about 1960

At first the trolleybus route was just over a mile from Twickenham Junction where adequate space was available to turn round to the new Post Office at Teddington. A similar space existed within easy reach of Teddington station. Six months later the service had proved so successful that extensions to Kingston and Wimbledon extended for 17 miles.

Trolleybuses in King Street Twickenham in about 1960

All local tram and trolleybus routes became part of the London Passenger Transport Board (LPTB) on 1 July 1933. Trams on route 67, from Hammersmith to Hampton Court, were converted to trolleybus on 27 Oct 1935 and became route 667.

The last day of operations for trolleybuses was on 8 May 1962 and included the running of the very first trolleybus (Number 1, number plate HX 2756) seen here leaving Fulwell on that date

During the war a lighter diesel engine was developed leading to reintroduction of the motor bus. In 1954 the LPTB decided to scrap the whole trolleybus system from 1959. The final trolleybus in London ran on 8 May 1962 although the route was so thronged with sightseers and people trying to board that it did not arrive back at the depot until the early hours of 9 May. Thus Fulwell was host to both the very first and the very last trolleybus in London. With the introduction of diesel buses, route 267 replaced trolleybus route 667 which itself had replaced tram route 67. Thus the '67' introduced in 1903 still runs 110 years later.

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