After much speculation a plan of action has now been revealed for the operation of heritage trams to and from the annual Fleetwood Festival of Transport, better known by many as Tram Sunday and happening this year on Sunday 19th July. An impressive total of eight historic trams will feature at this year’s event, six of which will operate a frequent timetabled service whilst two others will be on static display in Fleetwood.
A twenty minute heritage tram service is scheduled to operate between Pleasure Beach and Fisherman’s Walk Fleetwood (the temporary northern terminus of the tramway from the start of service until the event closes in the early evening). Departures from Pleasure Beach start from 1000 and last at this frequency until 1600, with an additional car departing from this location at 1630. Trams will also run every twenty minutes from Fisherman’s Walk, where a temporary heritage tram stop will be placed, from 1053 to 1653, and again there is another departure at 1723.
As an extra attraction, two static trams will be displayed at Pharos Street in Fleetwood for the duration of the festival and then both will run back to Blackpool, terminating at Rigby Road depot. Subject to availability, these should be Box 40 and Bolton 66 and anyone wishing to ride on this special trip will need to purchase a special ticket for £5 from the crew on board these two cars during the day – note that this is an extra tour and that normal heritage day passes will not be valid, although these will be available to use on the other six cars plus the normal service trams and buses as usual. Some swapping of crews is expected to occur to allow those manning the cars running all day a break, and it is to the credit of the organisers of the heritage service that this is being achieved without any gaps in the service! All of this should ensure that 19th July will be an interesting day although as yet, no word has been given regarding which trams will be chosen to operate on the day. Please note that this is all official information as confirmed by Blackpool Transport and the Blackpool Heritage Trust; unfortunately some people who are apparently involved with Tram Sunday have been claiming that as many as fourteen heritage trams will be attending. It is unclear where this idea has come from as all promotion from BTS had always referred to a six car service, meaning that the company is providing exactly what had been promised and more besides. Indeed, had this higher number of cars been used, this would have been even more than the legendary 1985 festival held to celebrate the tramway’s centenary year!
The full timetable for the heritage trams is available to download from the Blackpool Heritage Tram Tours Facebook page and any other announcements regarding trams at the event should also appear there.