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At one time there were thousands and thousands of tramway poles in Sheffield holding the cables over the tram tracks. Now of course there are a handful left - some survive almost intact on Snig Hill, Abbeydale Road and Prince of Wales Road, however there are lots which have been crudely cut down and can still be seen in the ground on the edge of pavements, sometimes sticking out of the surface, sometimes still just underneath and surfaced over but still possible to make out. Walking down Chesterfield Road yesterday i saw half a pole being used as a fence post - i wonder how many more are out there and whether people know what they are when they see one.

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The poles on the tram routes had a dual purpose of providing the support for street lighting lanterns on attached brackets. Mains wiring was strung between them, usually 4 wires for a three phase + neutral supply. The lighting circa 1960 was usually large (1000/1500 watt) incandescent lamps on the tram routes and these were still in use long after the demise of the trams. They were eventually replaced by concrete columns with low pressure sodium lanterns. These in turn were replaced with steel columns.


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