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Ditchling Road tram shelter

Tram shelter in Ditchling Road
Photo by Tony Mould

The Downs School

Whilst living in Ditchling Road, I attended the Downs School. At that time it consisted of the large red-brick main building and an ‘annexe’ which was across the road, behind what I always assumed to be the caretakers cottage. This was directly behind the bus stop.

Remembering the trolley buses

I always assumed the shelter was a bus-shelter but now know of course that it was one of the few remaining tram shelters to be found in Brighton and Hove. I can remember, of course, the trolley buses which ran up and down Ditchling Road. In fact, my uncle’s dog Smokey was run over by one whilst we lived there. Not far from the house, across the road, was a ‘request’ stop, we used to look back up Ditchling Road towards Fiveways and if there was no bus in sight, we walked (or ran) down to the shelter.

Full circle to the tram shelter

At the age of eleven I passed the 11 plus and used to walk to Varndean Girls School. Later, my daughter attended the Downs School too. We lived in Preston Road at the time but soon after moved to Montpelier Road. That meant we had to catch two buses, one to the Old Steine and then on to a number 26 and of course the same journey home and back in the afternoon. So again, fifteen years later, I found myself waiting in the tram shelter.

Comments about this page

  • I’d love to see these shelters restored. I live very close to the Downs School and it’s such a shame what’s happened to these lovely old shelters. The house by the shelter is such a beautiful building but that too has been wrecked.

    By Max (06/07/2010)
  • I remember sheltering in this one Winter evening about 1950. I had been to the doctors in Florence Road with my Mum and while we were in there a thick pea-souper smog had descended. We couldnt see more than a couple of feet in front of us and even crossing the road was frightening. When the bus eventually turned up, a man was walking in front with a torch! The bus took a very  long time to reach the Lewes Road bus stop travelling at a snail’s pace.

    By Maureen Sweet (24/12/2013)
  • My brother Malcolm and I went to the Downs in Ditching Road and walked from our parents’ house in Vere Road. I went to Varndean Girls after passing the Eleven Plus. Many years later I bought one of the little cottages nearly opposite the Downs School. It was next door to the cottages that had been the tuck shop with penny lollies.

    By Ann Bonner (nee Collis) (08/12/2014)

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