Posted by: SB Websites | December 24, 2012

24/12/12 News Update

New Flexity Adverts

December has seen a large number of new adverts on the new Flexity 2 trams, many of which have replaced existing adverts. Flexity 010 has had its Grand Theatre advert replaced by a new one for the Cinderella Pantomime in a similar dark purple and blue style while possibly one of the more appealing adverts has been applied to 004 in the form of another Pleasure Beach advert. This new advert is for the Wallace and Gromit ‘Thrill-O-Matic’ ride which is opening for the 2013 season and replaces the Hot Ice Advert that was previously carried. A new advertiser for the trams has came in the form of the NHS which has a purple based advert on one side of 008 advertising the dangers of high blood pressure.

Snowplough Tram Ready for Service

In preparation for a bad winter and with a new 12 minute frequency winter service in force, Balloon 701 has been fitted with snowploughs. 701 has not been used in passenger service this year although it has performed at least one run down to Starr Gate so remains in fully operational condition as a reserve.

Western Train Santa Specials

Blackpool Transport introduced the new Santa Express that ran on December 8th, 9th, 15th, 16th, 22nd and 23rd by Western Train 733+734 which ran between Pleasure Beach and Little Bispham. Three tours operated on each day at 10:00, 11:30 and 14:00 though unfortunately loadings were very light which was undoubtedly due to the late announcement of the service and that tickets were required to be pre-booked. However, the final weekend saw an improvement in loadings showing the service could have been largely popular if it was announced at an earlier date.

Flexity 002 Back on the Promenade

After returning back from Germany in early November, 002 has since returned to use although surprisingly it has returned to its original role as a driver trainer. It has yet to enter passenger service, though this cannot be far away with vinyls applied making this the first time 002 has been seen in full livery. The operational Flexity fleet is also starting to decrease again following 005 having not been seen since October and 006 being out of service since August.

631 Takes a Step Further into its Heritage

With the heritage fleet now confined to the depot for the winter, progress is being made on restoring Brush 631 to make it closer to its original identity. This has included fitting swing over seats from Balloon 700 and a repaint into an as of yet unannounced green and cream livery. After 631 is complete, work is expected to commence on Centenary 648 which should also be painted into a variant of green and cream which will make both trams more suited to their roles after being used in expired adverts for the duration of 2012.

The Future of 646?

Out of the many trams sold in 2012, it was likely that plans for some of these trams would not meet fruition and is the future of 646 is currently not looking good. 646 was previously en-marked for the Corpse Road tram museum though after suffering from vandalism, the decision was taken to sell the tram to an independent buyer. Since then, various parts have been offered for sale on ebay making it increasingly unlikely that 646 will make it into preservation and the tram has since moved from Paul Gaunt’s premises near Blackpool Airport to an unknown location.


646 is seen at North Pier on the 24th April 2010 and remained very much the same until withdrawn.


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