Thursday, 27 July 2017

Centenary 645 returns to Blackpool

Centenary 645 at Windy Harbour Caravan Park, showing some of its broken and boarded up windows
Hot on the heels of the move of loaned Birkenhead 20 from the Wirral to Rigby Road depot, Scotts made the short journey to Little Singleton to collect Centenary 645. It was shortly after 4.00pm before Scotts Heavy Haulage arrived at Windy Harbour Caravan Park to collect 645, and as it transpired it would be a long and protracted procedure recovering the Centenary Car from the caravan site. On measuring both the tram and the trailer, it was discovered that the latter was fractionally too short to load 645 onto its flat bed. To overcome the slight hitch it was decided to construct a sloping rail ramp on the trailer bed so that the end of the tram could be positioned above the low loader's rear wheels, thus resolving the problem. After a long and tiring loading process, 645 was finally chained down to the low loader late on the Thursday evening, eventually being unloaded back in Blackpool some time after 1.00am the next morning! The ultimate plan is to restore 645 back to operational condition for use in the heritage fleet, this tram carrying the final incarnation of the Centenary fleet modifications.

The pantograph tower being removed from the roof of 645
Centenary 645 being pulled from its resting place towards the trailer
Centenary 645 making its way gingerly up the rail ramp

Centenary 645 being hauled up the rail ramp onto the trailer

Centenary 645 being hauled onto the low loader with the tractor unit's crane
Centenary 645 inching its way to its final loading position on the trailer
Centenary 645 chained down onto the low loader trailer of Scotts Heavy Haulage

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