Friday 8 March 2013

304 returns from Beamish

Scotts low loader reversing into Brinwell Road, Marton, with Coronation 304 and its tower on the trailer

The LTT owned Coronation tram 304 left Beamish museum on 7th March for the journey back to Blackpool, after having been loaned to Beamish for use in passenger service for a few weeks towards the end of the 2012 season.

304 spent the night at Forton services on the M6 just south of Lancaster, before resuming it's journey to Blackpool on the morning of 8th March. The intention was for 304 to be stabled under cover at the rear of the Classic Bus North West garage in Brinwell Road, Marton, however things didn't exactly go according to plan. The space in front of the CBNW depot proved insufficient for Scotts low loader to be able to swing through the relatively narrow entrance doorway into the building. The access into the adjacent LTT building was even more restricted, so that option was out as well. With the open storage yard near Jackson's coaches also now being out of the question (due to an ownership change), a major rethink was required.

With the available options rapidly running out, an olive branch presented itself which involved transporting the tram to Fleetwood. 304 is now residing in an open storage yard at a business premises alongside the trams owned by the Fleetwood Heritage Leisure Trust (formerly Friends of Fleetwood Trams), due to a commendable piece of cooperation between the two preservation groups at very short notice.

Only time will tell if this rather unsuitable location for the tram becomes permanent or not, unfortunately it was the only option available given the very short time scales in which a decision had to be made.

Unfortunately the space in front of the Classic Bus North West garage proved insufficient for 304 to gain access
Some frantic last minute phone calls resulted in 304 being able to be stored at a yard in Fleetwood

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