Blackpool Trams Anniversary Spectacular weekend 21.9-24.9

September 27, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

711 and 642 at North Pier711 and 642 at North PierBalloon 711 returns to Rigby Road after a day stabled at North Pier as the shop tram while Centenary 642 approaches with a heritage service to Pleasure Beach 23.9.18 Friday 21st September

I arrived in a very windy Blackpool at 2pm and Brush Car 621 and Ex towing Railcoach 680 were working an afternoon Heritage service from 1.30-5.00pm between Pleasure Beach and North Pier / Cabin.  The tramway was in chaos after 4.30pm due to an issue with the overhead line and high winds meaning the tramway was closed temporarily between Starr Gate and Manchester Square.

Into the evening and the Fireworks championship entry for the night had been cancelled due to the weather.  The prom was quieter than a normal Illuminations Friday night, meaning only 2 trams out on illuminations tours.  Frigate 736 and the Western Train 733+734 were used with Trawler 737 being used for the Ghost tram tour to Fleetwood and back.

Saturday 22nd September

Saturday was a lot calmer with a cool breeze and alot of cloud about.   There was a number of heritage trams out on the enhanced heritage services during the day.  711 was stabled at North Pier for the day as the Shop tram. 719 was used on the depot shuttle between Rigby Road Depot and Starr Gate. 621 and 717 operated a heritage service between Starr Gate and Fleetwood, while 40, 147, 600, 631, 642, 701, 715, 718 and 723 operated heritage services and specials between Pleasure Beach and North Pier / Cabin / Bispham / Little Bispham / Cleveleys and Thornton Gate.

At Rigby Road, there was a display of trams along the fitting shop wall and on the depot fan in connection with the depot tours.   Brush Car 634, Balloon 703 (still in Sunderland livery) and open top balloon 706 were on display along the fitting shop wall and Jubilee 761, Halle 902 and Engineering tram 754 on the depot fan.

On to the evening and there was 6 trams out on Illuminations tours. 733+734, 736, 147, 701, 718 and 723 saw use during the night with each tram doing 2 tours.

Sunday 23rd September

During the week before heading to Blackpool, the forecast for Sunday was for heavy rain all day, however it turned out to be a fine sunny day! Again there was plenty of trams out. 711 once again had the role of shop tram. 713 started as the depot shuttle tram, however it failed at Manchester Square on it's first trip and was towed back to depot. 719 replaced 713 for the remainder of it's duties. 701 and 715 operated between Starr Gate, with 40, 66, 600, 621, 642, 648, 680, 717, 718 and 737 operating the remainder of the specials and heritage services.

At Rigby Road, 634, OMO 8 and open top Balloon 706 were on display at the Fitting shop wall, while Jubilee 761, Brush 631 and Coronation 304 were on display on the depot fan.   I went on the 11am tour of the depot and Balloon 703, Brush 634, Boat 230 (604) and Twin Car 675+685 were in the electrical compound. Standard 143 was in the Fitting shop, Birkenhead 20 in the Body shop along with the lower saloon of Lytham 43 and Glasgow 1016. Boat 227 (602) was in the paint shop and is due to return to service in a couple of weeks time. In the main depot, the City Tram (former Trampower 611), Brush 625, Balloons 708, 723 and 726, Millennium Balloons 707, 709 and 724, Hovertram 735, Rocket 732, The Western Train, the Frigate and Coronation 660 were visible.   At Starr Gate, Flexities 005 and 011 were in the storage shed, while 007, 014 and 017 were in the maintenance shed.

On to the evening and 737 was out on a private hire, whilst 733+734 and 736 were joined by Balloons 700, 711 and 719 on illuminations tours, however the 3 balloons only did 1 tour each.

Monday 24th September

I was in Blackpool till 1pm and it was only Flexities out in service.   Interestingly, Flexities 003 and 016 have received a pink all over advert for Prettylittlething.com.

Overall it was a fantastic weekend with plenty of trams to see. My full gallery of photos can be found at: https://scottishtrains.zenfolio.com/p725771107


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Most of my Photographs and sightings are from my favourite locations in the Lanarkshire area, including

  • Carstairs
  • Float Viaduct
  • Abington
  • Cartland
  • Hartwood
  • Greenfaulds
  • Holytown
  • Coatbridge Central
  • Auchengray
  • Carluke
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