Today’s Picture in Time heads back to UK’s largest modern tram system, Manchester Metrolink, and the tram we feature is T68 1022 with a trio of images from the very first day of cross-city on street operations – 27th April 1992.
1022 has arrived at Queens Road Depot on 5th March 1992 and the date of these photos was actually its first day in passenger service. After three years of service it underwent a trial interior refurbishment – which turned out to not be a success as it led to a reduction in seating – and then in 2003 it left Greater Manchester for Wolverton Works where it spent five months undergoing the refurbishment works. Just a few months after returning to service 1022 derailed at Queens Road Depot – blocking access to all trams – but it was just ten days before the tram was back carrying passengers. In 2009 it was the turn of 1022 to go through the T68X Universal Running Modifications programme and it then settled into regular operation until the end. And the end came for 1022 at the very end as it was one of the last two T68s in service when it worked with 1007 as a double unit on 4th February 2014. Running on the Altrincham to Bury direct service the pair were replaced during the afternoon of this day and returned to depot where they were destined to never run in public service again. Unlike many of the withdrawn T68s though it is still in existence today being chosen as one of the trams to become part of the UK Tram test fleet based at Long Marston where it has been since August 2014.
Our first photo shows 1022 at G-Mex – which at this time was the terminus of the line towards Altrincham – with one of the original ticket machines also in view.