Friday, 21 February 2014

Balloon 703 sold to Beamish

Sunderland 101 (Blackpool 703) running down the main street at Beamish in November 2012
Balloon 703 (masquerading as Sunderland 101) has been on loan to Beamish Museum from the Lancastrian Transport Trust since September 2010. The tram was painted into Sunderland red and cream livery prior to its move north, inspired by Sunderland English Electric built centre entrance car 99, which resembled a less streamlined version of a Blackpool Balloon in appearance. Beamish have now announced that they have concluded a deal to purchase 703 from the LTT, thus ensuring its long term future at the museum as part of their well maintained collection of trams. There is now a possibility that 703 will at some point in the future revert to its former twin destination display layout, in order that the tram more closely resemble its predecessor Sunderland 99.

Balloon 703 on the Golden Mile at Blackpool, still wearing its attractive 1980s livery in September 2002

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