Tuesday 27 February 2018

Balloons on Private Hire

Balloons 718, 717 & 723 loading up with passengers at the Imperial Hotel
Three of the heritage tram fleet took part in a private hire on the evening of 27th February. Balloons 717, 718 & 723 picked up a large party of guests from the Imperial Hotel shortly before 18:00, just after sunset. The plan was for the three trams to run south down to Starr Gate, then return their passengers back to the Imperial Hotel.

Balloons 723, 717 & 718 on a private hire at the Imperial Hotel

Open Topper on the Coastliner 21

Sightseeing Manchester open top Trident W501 RBB in Cleveleys on the Coastliner 21
Due to a temporary vehicle shortage on the Coastliner 21, one of the Sightseeing Manchester open top Tridents was noted in service on the Fylde Coast on Tuesday 27th February. W501 RBB, an Alexander ALX400 bodied Dennis Trident, was rather a long way from its usual stamping ground in Manchester, but was a pleasant diversion from the usual run of the mill buses to be seen running along the Promenade.

Sightseeing Manchester Trident W501 RBB in Cleveleys on the 21 to St Annes
Sightseeing Manchester open top Trident W501 RBB at Cleveleys Bus Station

Monday 26 February 2018

Old Layton tram route track

Old tram tracks revealed on Talbot Road near the junction with Abingdon Street on 25th February
The realignment of essential gas, water and electric pipes along Talbot Road, to make way for the new tram extension to North Station occasionally unearth some of the old tram track. Utility work excavations have have recently revealed a short section of the former Layton route track close to the junction with Abingdon Street.

Sunday 25 February 2018

Heritage on the South Promenade

Brush Car 621 at Starr Gate about to leave for Fleetwood on Saturday
The February Winter Gold weekend began on Saturday 24th February, with clear blue skies being the order of the day. The timetabled service operated between Starr Gate and Fleetwood Ferry, with trams 623, 715, 631, 621, 701 and 717 in use throughout the day, with Balloon 700 serving as the heritage shop stationed on the loop near North Pier. Sunday saw more of the same fine sunny weather, with trams 701, 713, 680, 630, 723 & 718 running the tours. Around midday Railcoach 680 was taken out of heritage service and replace by Brush Car 621.

Balloon 717 bound for Starr Gate along the South Promenade
Brush Car 631 rounding the curve on the approach to the Starr Gate terminus
Balloon 715 heading for Starr Gate along the South Promenade
Brush Car 623 setting off from Starr Gate on a run to Little Bispham
Balloon 701 approaching the Pleasure Beach on a tour through to Fleetwood
Balloon 723 at Starr Gate heading north on a Heritage Tour on Sunday morning
Railcoach 680 at the Pleasure Beach on the first run of the day to Starr Gate
Balloon 713 at the Pleasure Beach heading north towards Little Bispham
718 at Starr Gate after unloading its passengers at the temporary Heritage Tour stop
Brush 630, on loan from the Tramway Museum at Crich, on South Promenade

Brush 621 from Starr Gate to Fleetwood Ferry

621 approaching the terminus at Starr Gate on Saturday 24th February
The Winter Gold weekend on 24th & 25th February saw heritage trams operating a regular timetabled service from Starr Gate to Fleetwood Ferry. Saturday 24th saw Brush Car 621 in all day service, and as most of the day was blessed with unbroken sunshine, this gave many people their first chance to photograph 621 in all its glory for the first time. On the Sunday 621 was due to remain in Rigby Road depot, but around lunchtime Railcoach 680 was taken out of service and replaced by Brush 621 on the 'C' timetable, just in time for the tram to make its second run of the weekend to Fleetwood, again in full sunshine. This selection of photos combines shots taken over both days, showcasing 621 at both Starr Gate and Fleetwood plus several points in between.

621 at Starr Gate terminus about to make a run to Fleetwood on Saturday 24th February
621 pauses at the Pleasure Beach on its northbound journey to Fleetwood Ferry
621 heading north along Lord Street in Fleetwood on Sunday 25th February
621 at Fleetwood Ferry on Sunday 25th February
621 approaching the heritage tram stop on Pharos Street in Fleetwood
621 heading south along North Albert Street in Fleetwood
621 passing Cleveleys Park Methodist Church at West Drive
Balloon 717 at the Pleasure Beach with 621 returning from a run to Fleetwood Ferry

Saturday 24 February 2018

Blackpool Swift on the Coastliner

Swift 570 turning from Rough Lea Road into Rossall Road in Cleveleys
Former Blackpool Corporation Transport AEC Swift 570 was in service on Catch22bus's Coastliner 21 route on Saturday 24th February, operating between Cleveleys and St. Annes. This special event was to commemorate 30 years since the withdrawal of these buses from Blackpool Transport service in February 1988.

Swift 570 passing the Pleasure Beach on its way to St. Annes on the Coastliner 21 service

Monday 12 February 2018

Half Term Heritage

Brush Car 630 (on loan from the Tramway Museum at Crich) passing the Tower
The 2018 February half term break in Blackpool saw the first outing of mid-week Heritage Tour trams this year. Balloon 717 and Brush Car 630 were the trams selected for Promenade Tour duty on Monday 12th February, and luckily the sun shone brightly for much of the day.

Balloon 717 heading south along the Promenade near the Tower
Brush 630 passing Balloon 717 at the Tower/North Pier heritage tram stop