From Poole To Cherbourg A Pied

No 1 son plus No 1 son’s Mrs took a short break in Cherbourg as foot passengers. They travelled OUT on a proper ferry operated by Brittany ditto …

… and returned c/o Condor on one of those super sleek wave piercer catamarans.
The ferry terminus at Cherbourg …
… is obviously a deep water facility, but too its left you can espy the entrance to the traditional harbour.
The boy plus wife booked an airbnb (which, much to fbb’s eternal chagrin, do not ever serve b – which makes it a daft name. And they all have a roof and are not open to the air!) a pace or two to the east of the tradition Harbour. Joining to two halves of the harbourside is the Pont Tournant.

Interestingly this forms a useful focus for a brief wander through the history of public transport in the town.

Public Transport Progression – Tram To Bus

In 1896 a service of trams began and they were steam hauled …

… with one if these at the front.
So the first swing bridge carried a single track for the trams and presumably what little road traffic there was.
This was then widened to double track.
Readers may like to keep their eyes on the building on the left on the far bank. This was the office, rest room and operating room for the bridge.

In 1901 the system was electrified …

… and the swing bridge was equipped with framework and wiring to ensure electrical continuity when open to the trams.
This was similar to the set-up we saw a while back over the Forth Clyde canal in Glasgow. 
Here is a closer look …
… with the swing bridge swung.

In 1944 Cherbourg was heavily bombarded as part of the Normandy invasions. There was huge damage, as here to the railway station …

… and here to the swing bridge.
Trams never ran again after 1944. The bridge was, of course, rebuilt sans overhead …
… and buses replaced trams …
… having been introduced earlier serving the “outer suburbs”
But the name remained nearly the same with one change also beginning with “T”.!

The Transport company (CTC Compagnie Transports de Cherbourg) continued to run the buses until today’s franchised system took over.

A notable bus terminus are was outside the Hotel de Ville (Town Hall) …

… which us now bereft of traffic …
… and appears to have been demoted to a Tourist Information Centre. A much larger Town Hall is located nearby.

And the swing bridge became rather boring!

But it still swings and the “cottage” HQ still stands.

Tomorrow we look at the transport network today. In doing so, we take a virtual ride to the beach with son and daughter–in-law.

 Next Cherbourg bus blog : Friday 1st September 

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