Monday 27 May 2013

Spring Bank Holiday Weekend

The highlight of the weekend was surely Centenary car 642 seeing Heritage Tour service, seen here at North Pier
Sunday 26th May saw another excellent day of heritage running on the tramway in Blackpool, with no less than eight of the traditional tram fleet seeing use at some point during the days proceedings. The day started out overcast and grey for the first heritage run to Fleetwood and ended up cloudy for the late afternoon heritage outing to Fleetwood, but in between the first and last trips the sun shone unrelentingly all day in Blackpool. Centenary car 642 was the first tram out on the Heritage Tour, making the by now customary run to Fleetwood and back, with a full standing load. 

The second heritage car out was Balloon 723, which had been the standby snowplough during the winter, and widened Balloons 707 and 713 were in use on specials. Balloon 723 was swapped for Boat car 230 in the early afternoon due to the sunny weather. There were problems at the Pleasure Beach shortly after, when Centenary 642 decided to give up the ghost just after it had departed the loop for a run to Bispham. The tram had ground to a halt on the northbound running line alongside the inspectors hut, having suffered a burnt out traction motor. The problem required the fitters to be called out from the depot, in the meantime northbound service trams were held up and Boat car 230 was imprisoned on the Pleasure Beach loop, being unable to exit until 642 had been moved. 

642 eventually made it back to the depot under its own power, although this had put paid to the planned pairing of the two yellow trams 701 and 642 for the final heritage run to Fleetwood. The crew of 642 re-entered service later with Boat car 600, also flat fronted Balloon 707 was swapped for open-top Balloon 706 Princess Alice at 16:00. Another tram failure, with 230 suffering a compressor fault, meant the early withdrawal from service of this tram, to be replaced with yellow Balloon 701 which emerged from Rigby Road depot at 17:05, just in time to take part in the final heritage run of the day to Fleetwood, with Boat 600 acting as a duplicate on this run.

The weather on the Bank Holiday Monday began to deteriorate rapidly by mid-morning, with solid grey cloud and rain setting in for the remainder of the day, making this a good day to ride the trams but much less successful from a photography point of view.

Balloon 723 reversing on the crossover at Cleveleys, about to head south to North Pier then return to the depot

Balloon 707 on a special, turning onto the loop at the Pleasure Beach

Three Balloons sat line astern at the Pleasure Beach, 723 was on Heritage Tours, and 707 and 713 were on specials

Boat car 230 taking a short break at North Pier while Flexity 015 passes by on its way to Starr Gate

The crew of faulty 642 holding down the pantograph until the fitters arrive from the depot to diagnose the problem

Demic Centenary car 642 is passed by southbound Flexity 006 at the Pleasure Beach

Balloon 701 leaving Lytham Road and entering the Promenade at 17:10, getting ready to make its run to Fleetwood

Balloon 713 on a northbound special to the Cabin, seen here passing Foxhall Square

Northbound open-top 706 passes 701, which has just emerged from the depot and reversed over the points at Foxhall

As the skies begin to cloud over, Boat car 600 runs along North Albert Street in Fleetwood just before 18:30

Balloon 701 rounding the curve from North Albert Street into Lord Street in Fleetwood at 18:45

Boat car 600 ending up the days Heritage Tour proceedings, seen southbound at Rossall School at 18:50

No comments:

Post a Comment