Museum of Transport, Greater ManchesterMuseum of Transport, Greater Manchester  


Artefact Collection


Garage Manager's OfficeIn addition to the Vehicles and Archives Collections, the Museum has a large number of smaller items.


These can be considered in six major groups:



Donate an Artefact


Operated by the Greater Manchester Transport Society (a Registered Charity), the Museum depends on support from its members, individuals and other organisations in order to maintain the success that has been built up over the years.


If you think we might be interested in an artefact you would like to donate, please contact us.



Ticketing equipment


Ticketing equipment covers ticket machines, ticket racks, punches, fare boxes, cash counting machines, and so on. The Museum has examples of machines from Almex, Bell Punch, Setright, TIM, Ultimate, Verometer, Wayfarer, and Willebrew, with probably the oldest being a Kaye’s patent fare box. Over the years, the changes in company ownership means that a machine badged as one company may actually be manufactured by another. Modern electronic machines are just as significant as those from the 19th century in telling the story. We have machines from all the pre-SELNEC operators, except Ramsbottom, and from all the more recent major local operators. Racks for holding packs of punch tickets, and the Bell and Williamson punches, are also held. (Williamson had their works in Ashton under Lyne, and there is a small display at the Portland Basin Museum of this aspect of Ashton’s history). Fare boxes for one man operation, or self service coin operated machines, such as Autoslot, Johnsons, Sabloc or Videmat are on display, or in some cases fitted to the buses on which they would have been carried when in service.



Personal equipment


Personal equipment relates to the items worn or carried by personnel, of which the most obvious will be the uniform clothing. The Museum has a remarkable range of such clothing – jackets (summer and winter), trousers, (including shorts), skirts, shirts or blouses, ties, scarves, cravats, caps and hats, overcoats, raincoats, body warmers, anoraks, and even smocks and gaiters from the earliest periods of public transport, and covering all grades of staff – drivers, conductors, conductresses, inspectors, timekeepers, etc. There is also clothing for personnel other than platform staff, such as overalls, safety wear, and footwear. Although the predominant colour is dark blue or black, other colours are represented – the brown of Greater Manchester Transport, green from SHMD, grey and red summer uniforms from LUT, cream or white for dustcoats or light jackets. Some of the earlier uniforms are particularly ornate, with company or corporation insignia, buttons and rank badges, and even into GMT days, the quality of uniform reflected the grade of the wearer. Much could be written on the subject of badges and buttons, with each operator having their own design, often personalised in later years (“I’m Ken your driver)”, plus of course the official Driver or Conductor badge issued by the Traffic Commissioners. Staff could also indicate periods of long service, or Union membership, with appropriate badges. Leather cash bags could have been included with ticketing equipment above, but are an essential part of the conductor’s kit, whilst up until the 1970s, few crews went on the road without an enamel brew can to hold ever strengthening tea.



Vehicle related items


Vehicle related items is used to describe those items which although part of the bus, are often separated from it for some reason! Therefore, we include here destination screens and the winding apparatus, linen or plastic route or number blinds, metal stencils showing a route or its number, route boards from the sides of vehicles, and so on. Vehicle manufacturers’ or bodybuilders’ plates, often saved from scrapped vehicles, record company names, often in ornate fashion, whilst parts such as seat frames, cushions, examples of moquette or leather, handles, mirrors, lamps, fire extinguishers and so on add to the overall picture. From the tramway and trolleybus periods, there are examples of overhead line equipment, electrical parts, engraved window glasses from tramcars, sand boxes, bamboo poles to retrieve errant trolley poles, and control equipment.



Road SignStreet furniture


Street furniture describes all the different objects seen at the roadside – bus stops and posts, road signs, traffic lights, bollards, the telephone box and posting box, electrical or telephone junction boxes, notice boards, timetable cases, promotional boards, and so on.



Office and works equipment


Office and works equipment covers all the typical objects found in an office – typewriters, telephones, mail boxes, filing cabinets, etc., plus more modern objects such as radios, televisions, copiers and so on, and the smaller items such as pens, pencils, inkwells, etc. Works equipment refers to machinery and equipment used in vehicle maintenance, for painting, tyre fitting, MOT testing, lifting and handling vehicles or spare parts, safety and security.



Manchester Corporation coat of arms from Birchfields Road DepotMiscellaneous and special items


The final category, Miscellaneous and special items, describes those one-off or otherwise unique objects which add that little bit more to the overall picture. This includes the decorative tool box, the foundation stones and other commemorative stonework, the destination screen printer, the ticket printer, the toys and models.

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Greater Manchester's transport heritage

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