Monday 17 December 2018

Talbot Square Panorama

A panoramic photo of Talbot Square taken on 17th December, showing an overall view of the new junction. None of the four lines from the Promenade are joined to the new Talbot Square pointwork yet, the contractors are concentrating on concreting in place the curved rails connected to the Promenade points first.

Thursday 13 December 2018

Talbot Square Junction

New rail being laid for the northbound junction at Talbot Square

The North Station tramway extension contractors have been busy laying the track work for the junction with the Promenade at Talbot Square this week. The curved sections of rail that join to the existing Promenade line points are being welded in place first, this will allow the contractors to adjust the remaining sections of curved rail so that they align correctly with the newly laid pointwork in the centre of Talbot Square.

New track in place for the southbound junction at Talbot Square

A view showing the general track layout at the junction with the Promenade

New curved rail being thermite welded to the existing Promenade points

Tuesday 11 December 2018

Coronation 304 out on Test

Coronation 304 crossing over at Foxhall Square on its first run

Coronation 304 made a couple of test runs on the Promenade this afternoon. The Fylde Transport Trust owned tram was having its Vambac control and 24 volt inverter charging systems tested following the fitting of new batteries. 304 made two round trips between Foxhall Square and the Pleasure Beach before returning to Rigby Road depot after a successful outing. This is the first occasion that 304 has been out on the Promenade since 2016.

Coronation 304 passing Flexity 006 at Foxhall

304 heading north at the Pleasure Beach on its first run of the afternoon

304 heading south past a Flexity at Manchester Square

304 heading north at Manchester Square on its last run

304 crossing the Promenade at Manchester Square

304 passing Enviro 441 on Lytham Road as the tram returns to the depot

Friday 7 December 2018

Bloodhound SSC at Blackpool in 2010

The Bloodhound SSC mock-up on display at Squires Gate in 2010

With today's sad news that the Bloodhound SSC supersonic car project has finally been axed, it's time to look back at some photos of the Bloodhound mock-up that visited Blackpool back in 2010. The mock-up of the Bloodhound SSC was on public display at Blackpool Airport at Squires Gate on 3rd September 2010, during a UK fund raising tour to try and raise public awareness for the project and generate sponsorship. The project went into administration in October this year, still some £25 million short of the amount needed to make an attempt on the 1,000 mph land speed record. See for more info while the website is still active.

A rear view of the Bloodhound SSC mock-up at Squires Gate

A head on view of the mock-up
Bloodhound SSC at Squires Gate

Wednesday 28 November 2018

Birkenhead 20 leaves Blackpool

The depot fork lift truck shunted 20 from the depot into Blundell Street

Birkenhead open-top tram 20 left Blackpool on 28th November to return to its home on the Wirral Tramway. 20 originally arrived on loan to the heritage fleet on 27th July 2017, but spent most of its time unused in the tram depot awaiting attention to its wheels, only seeing limited use during the last two months of its visit. Scotts low loader arrived in Blundell Street shortly before 08:00 on Wednesday morning, by 10:30 the tram was loaded onto the trailer and had departed for its relatively short journey back to Birkenhead.

Birkenhead 20 being pushed up the ramp by the fork lift truck

Birkenhead 20 being winched onto the trailer

Birkenhead 20 safely winched onto the low loader trailer

A rear view of Scotts low loader with 20 safely loaded

Birkenhead 20 loaded up and chained down ready for departure

Scotts low loader turning into Lytham Road for the trip south to Birkenhead

Sunday 11 November 2018

BTS remember the fallen

Flexity 016 on the Orion Curve in Cleveleys wearing its Remembrance Day poppy

Now becoming an annual tradition, many of Blackpool's trams and buses wore large poppies in the days and weeks leading up to Remembrance Day on Sunday 11th November.

Trident 309 wearing a Remembrance Day poppy at Anchorsholme

Flexity 004 at Anchorsholme with its Remembrance Day poppy

ADL Enviro 233 showing off its Remembrance Day poppy in Cleveleys

Flexity 014 at Cleveleys tram station with its Remembrance Day poppy

Volvo 524 with its Remembrance Day poppy in Cleveleys

Plaxton Centro 531 showing off its Remembrance Day poppy at Anchorsholme

Friday 9 November 2018

New Dart in service with Catch22Bus

Dart KP04GZM in the centre of Cleveleys on its first day of service with Catch22Bus

Former Stagecoach Midlands Dennis Dart KP04GZM entered service with Catch22Bus this morning in their smart fleet livery of green and blue. KP04GZM's debut into service was on route 24 between Fleetwood and Poulton.

Thursday 1 November 2018

New Overall Advert for Catch22Bus

Dart GX54DWO on the Coastliner 21 service at Gynn Square on 1st November

Former Stagecoach Midlands Dennis Dart GX54DWO has entered service with Catch22Bus carrying an all-over advert for the HoundsHill Shopping Centre in Blackpool. GX54DWO was noted in service on the Coastliner 21 route to St Annes this morning.

Wednesday 31 October 2018

Unusual working on Service 24

Olympian P534EFL at St Chad's Church in Poulton on 31st October

Passengers using the service 24 of Catch22Bus, that runs between Fleetwood and Poulton, will have been in for a surprise this afternoon. Due to two buses suddenly becoming unavailable for use, an open-top Volvo Olympian was pressed into service at short notice to meet the vehicle shortfall. Olympian P534EFL is normally to be seen running on the Coastliner 21 service between Cleveleys and St Annes, but had a rare outing on this inland route today. (Photo used by courtesy of Catch22Bus Ltd)

Sunday 28 October 2018

Birkenhead 20 on Timetabled Tours

Birkenhead 20 at the Gynn on the last trip of the day on Sunday

On the weekend of the 27th and 28th October, open-top Birkenhead tram 20 operated several special tours in addition to the normal Heritage Tour service. The tours ran at 11:00, 13:00 and 15:00 on each day, consisting of a round trip from the Pleasure Beach to Bispham and return for the price of £5.50. Most obligingly the weather remained sunny throughout the weekend, although rather chilly, especially on the top deck of Birkenhead 20.

Flexity 006 passing Birkenhead 20 at Bispham on Sunday

Birkenhead 20 heading south at the Imperial Hotel on the last special on Saturday

Birkenhead 20 at the Pleasure Beach after the first run on Saturday

Thursday 25 October 2018

Boat 227 named Charlie Cairoli

The official party on their way to the naming ceremony at North Pier

Boat 227 was relaunched at a naming ceremony at North Pier this morning. 227 has been restored by Blackpool Transport in conjunction with Blackpool Civic Trust. The tram's new name is "Charlie Cairoli", who is best known for being a clown at Blackpool Tower Circus for many years. The unveiling was undertaken by Charlie Cairoli Junior, the son of the famous clown. After a short ceremony and speeches, the official party and guests were treated to a ride to Bispham and then back to Hopton Road, onlooking members of the public were also invited along for the ride.

Charlie Cairoli Junior unveiling the name of his father on Boat 227

The official party and guests were treated to a ride to Bispham in Boat 227

Friday 19 October 2018

JD Flexity now has fleet numbers

Flexity 014 southbound at Manchester Square, with fleet numbers now applied

The JD Sports overall advert Flexity has now had the fleet number 014 applied to its cab sides.

Thursday 18 October 2018

Birkenhead 20 on Tour

Birkenhead 20 on a private hire on the Golden Mile

Birkenhead 20, a 1900 Milnes built open-top tram, originally arrived in Blackpool on loan way back in July 2017. Thursday 18th October 2018 finally saw its first outing on the tramway carrying passengers. The trials and tribulations of Birkenhead 20's unproductive time in Blackpool are well documented, but rather belatedly it has at long last been used. The tram's first outing was on a private hire for the Merseyside Tramway Preservation Society, who normally operate the tram on the Wirral Tramway in Birkenhead. Unfortunately it seems likely that Birkenhead 20 will be making its way back home to the Wirral after the end of the Illuminations, which is rather a shame as it has been unused for most of its 15 month visit.

Birkenhead 20 being brought out of the depot ready for its private hire

Birkenhead 20 beginning its afternoon tour at Manchester Square

Birkenhead 20 using the crossover at Foxhall to return to the Pleasure Beach

Tuesday 16 October 2018

Catch22Bus Optare Versa Round-up

Versa YJ61JHH crossing Victoria Square in Cleveleys on service 24 to Fleetwood

Catch22Bus repainted their 11.1m Optare Versa YJ61JHH into an eye-catching livery of lime green and monsoon blue earlier this year. A fourth Optare Versa has now been added to the fleet, this being YJ10EYZ, a 10.4m example formerly operated by Helms of Eastham, the bus is currently running in a plain white livery until it receives a repaint.

10.4m Versa YJ10EYZ at Victoria Square in Cleveleys on service 24 to Fleetwood

Versa YJ61JHH exiting Rough Lea Road in Cleveleys on service 24 to Poulton

Versa YJ61JHE on the Coastliner 21 service in Cleveleys

10.4m Versa YJ10EYZ on Meadows Avenue in Cleveleys on service 24 to Fleetwood

Teal liveried Versa YJ10MGU on Alexandra Road in Thornton on service 24 to Poulton