Page:Omnibuses and Cabs.djvu/84

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64
Omnibuses and Cabs

became general. It was not, however, like the knife-board omnibuses which we still see occasionally, for it carried only nine outside passengers. Two sat on either side of the coachman, and the other five on an uncomfortable seat, about a foot high, running the length of the omnibus. They climbed up at the back on the right-hand side of the door, and sat with their faces to the road. There were no seats on the near side, but occasionally, when passengers were numerous, the conductor would permit men to sit there, with their legs dangling down, over a little rail, in front of the windows. But he always extracted a promise from such passengers that if they smashed the windows they would pay for them. That was a very necessary precaution, as the glass was not of the substantial description now in use.

These new outside seats were very popular with the public, but the police objected to them, on the ground that the climbing up to them was dangerous. The police were undoubtedly in the right, as many accidents testified later, and when they summoned Mrs. Sophia Gaywood for having such seats on the roof of one of her Bayswater omnibuses, they obtained a conviction. But