Just like gold, trams are very much woven into Bendigo’s identity and are a highly visible reminder of the city’s remarkable heritage. Over the years, strong and continued support has been forthcoming from the Bendigo community and the Bendigo Tramways is eager to express appreciation in-kind through supporting the community in other practical ways.
As a result, the tramways acts not only as an advocate for Bendigo through our tourism promotions, but also supports local events by providing shuttle services and enabling the community to feel part of the tramways team through our “Friends of the Tramways” membership program.
The tramways offers vital employment and apprenticeship opportunities, as well as taking part in the government’s “Work for the dole” program. The completion of the current renovations at the tram depot will make it possible for the tramways to increase the amount of workshop contracts it accepts and will open the way for more jobs and more hands-on education and training for apprentices in specialised trades.
In addition to paid staff, the tramways has a very strong and active volunteer community many of whom love working at the tramways and interacting with one another to restore vintage trams to their former glory. Some of these volunteers have been at the tramways for many years, while others use the experience to move them into paid employment based on the skills that they have acquired whilst at the depot.
Even though the current tram services are generally for tourism purposes, the Bendigo Tramways continues to take an active role in discussions regarding Bendigo’s future transport requirements through the Bendigo +25 initiative and is ready and waiting to take up the task of returning Bendigo’s trams to public transport should the need arise.
From left to right: Emily, Alan, John and Shirley at the Depot upgrade announcements, taking part in the 2010 Bendigo Easter Parade, Tram No.30 after being refurbished by the Work for the Dole team