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Women tram conductors, 1918

First World War women tram conductors of the Metropolitan Electric Tramways Company pose for a studio portrait, 1917-1918. The Metropolitan Electric Tramways Company came under the control of the Underground Electric Railways Company of London Limited (UERL) or 'Underground Group' in 1915. Women tram conductors were employed in London from November 1915, although they were already working in Scotland and English provincial cities. From an Evening News article Nov 16 1915 - 'The conductors look very smart in their neat, short skirts , 10 inches off the ground met by long gaiters laced sailor fashion …the overcoats are lined with flannel …. The cap badge is a flash of electricity on a horseshoe "for good luck".' The badge was in fact the magnet and wheel insignia of the British Electric Traction Co. Between 18 - 23 August 1918, women bus and tram workers went on strike for the same increase [five shillings a week] in the war bonus as men workers. The strike was supported by the London and Provincial Union of Licensed Vehicle Workers. On August 30, the Committee on Production awarded the full back-dated increase to the women and extended the increase to munitions workers.

Title Women tram conductors, 1918
Maker --
Production Date 1918
Format Photograph
Copyright Ferris-Taylor, Rita
Holding Institution TUC Library Collections, London Metropolitan University
Related Objects "The lesson of the bus girls strike: why women must have equal pay", 1918
Bus and tramways strike for equal pay and war bonuses, 1918
Women workers on trams and buses, 1918
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