TRAMJATRA : Melbourne-Calcutta Tramways Friendship

Tramways are widely regarded as efficient and environmentally friendly forms of urban transport. Melbourne and Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) in India are two of the rare surviving tramway systems of continuous operation outside of Europe.

Both cities have an enduring love for trams and have fought against the anti tram forces that dismantled and destroyed many of the world's tramways through the 1950s and 60s.

The Melbourne-Calcutta Tramways Friendship exchanges and Tramjatra festivals celebrate the distinctive tram-way cultures of the two cities. The activities are a collaboration between trammies and the tram-loving communities of Melbourne and Kolkata. Trammies, artists and tram loving passengers have decorated the interior and exterior of many trams in both cities in 1996, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, and launched the Tramjatra book in Kolkata in 2005.

The tramjatras have featured performing tram conductors with photographic exhibitions in the trams.

Tram Conductors played the roles of exhibition guides, moving through decorated trams yarning and giving away collectable tickets and cards. Through their yarning, singing and storytelling traditions connies have been a bridge between the two cities, celebrating the similarities and differences of two of the world's great tramways.

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