United Electric Car Company


The United Electric Car Company was a tramcar manufacturer from 1905 to 1917 in Preston, Lancashire, England.

United Electric Car Company
IndustryRail transport
Founded1851; 171 years ago (1851)
HeadquartersPreston, Lancashire, England, UK
Area served
High-speed trains
Intercity and commuter trains
People movers
Signalling systems
London 106 built in April 1903


The Electric Railway and Tramway Carriage Works was formed in 1897 registered on 25 April 1898 to acquire works at Preston, Lancashire. It was founded by two Scots, W. B. Dick and John Kerr.

They formed a new company, English Electrical Manufacturing based in a new West Works on Strand Road, Preston in 1900, to build the electric motors for their trams.[1]

In 1905 the Electric Railway and Tramway Carriage Works took over two other works, including G.F. Milnes & Co. in Hadley, Shropshire, the name being then changed to United Electric Car Co.[2]

By 1914, the company employed around 2,000 people. They produced electrical equipment for tramways and railways and built over 8,000 tramcars, for service in the UK and abroad, including to the Hong Kong Tramways and Buenos Aires tramways operated by the Anglo-Argentine Tramways Company.[3]

Tram 49 is operated by the Black Country Living Museum. This double decker tram was originally built in 1909 for Wolverhampton Corporation Tramways. It is a typical Edwardian tramcar with an ornate lower saloon and open upper deck with traverse seating. Originally equipped with the Lorain system taking its power supply from studs in the road, it was later converted to run from overhead wires. Preserved in 1976, the tram was painstakingly restored by the Black Country Museum Transport Group over many years and completed in 2004.[4]


In 1917 Dick, Kerr & Co., also in Strand Road, Preston, acquired the United Electric Car Co and in 1918 the Company became a part of English Electric.

See alsoEdit

Archives and recordsEdit

  • United Electric Car Company photographs at Baker Library Special Collections, Harvard Business School.


  1. ^ Made in Lancashire: a history of regional industrialisation, Geoffrey Timmins. 1998. P.198
  2. ^ The Stock Exchange Year Book 1908
  3. ^ Exhibieron la dupla histórica Preston para festejar el Bicentenario (Spanish) - EnElSubte, 26 May 2010.
  4. ^ "Tram 49 - Black Country Living Museum Collection". www.bclm.co.uk. Retrieved 12 April 2018.