Brian Moseley, Plymouth
Webpage created: March 29, 2018
Webpage updated: July 27, 2019




The Plymouth and Devonport (Extension) Tramways Company might have been the third operator of a tramway in Plymouth but it never got further than its Act of Parliament, the Plymouth and Devonport (Extension) Tramways Act 1886, which received the Royal Assent on September 25th 1886.

Its promoters were Mr James Kirkwood and Mr Charles Sanders Wright and the authorized capital was 80,000 in 10 shares.

The Act empowered the Company to purchase the lines already constructed by the Plymouth, Devonport and District Tramways Company; to complete the system as authorized by the Plymouth, Devonport and District Tramways Act 1882; and to construct new lines. 

Because of the controversy over the old company using steam power rather than animal power, this new Act specified that if any other means of propulsion was used the sanction of both Plymouth and Devonport Corporations must be obtained and it was open to review every seven years by the Board of Trade.

With regard to the lines in Plymouth, the junction of Frankfort Street and Russell Street was to be improved and the track in Richmond Street, which caused the collapse of the original undertaking, was to be doubled.  The alternative was to put a new line through York Street.

One interesting clause in this Act benefited both the local authorities.  If the profit made should be more than is sufficient to pay a dividend of 7 10s per annum, then the Company must pay each of the authorities a rent of 20 per mile, which must be applied by them to maintaining and improving the roadways.

Finally, the Company were bound to providing a tram each way every morning and evening at a cheap fare for the benefit of artisans, mechanics and day labourers.

The Plymouth and Devonport (Extension) Tramways Company never got off the ground and the existing lines were eventually bought by the Plymouth Tramways Company, leaving Devonport without a tramway system until 1901.