Planning permission granted for Copse Road depot to be converted to tram museum

The Fleetwood Heritage Leisure Trust are celebrating after Wyre Borough Council gave the go-ahead for the former Copse Road tram depot to be converted from its current use as a car sales and storage area to a Tram Museum and Workshop. This now means that the FHLT will be able to proceed with submitting a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund to help make their dreams a reality.

Wyre Borough Council approved the change of use for the former Tramroad Depot on 16th July just days after the FHLT had been involved in a successful Fleetwood Tram Sunday event which saw two of Blackpool Transport’s Balloon trams visiting. The Depot was originally built in 1897 for the opening of the Blackpool and Fleetwood Tramroad Company’s line which opened the following year and it remains the only standing tram depot from the late Victorian era on the Fylde Coast. The FHLT are also the only heritage tram group in the UK to have the lease on an original electric tramcar depot.

The new Museum will eventually house six of the Trust’s ten tramcars and the Workshop area will allow renovation on two trams at a time. It is planned that the Workshop will be used as a skills training and transfer unit in cooperation with the National Offenders
Management Service (NOMS) and HM Prison Kirkham.

The FHLT have already launched an appeal to raise funds towards installing four traditional tram depot doors for the front of the structure this winter with each set costing £8000. Recently BAM Nuttall donated some lengths of tram rail which will be used in the
Workshop area and other Fylde companies are providing material assistance to the Trust.

Speaking of the decision to grant planning permission, John Woodman, Chair of the Trust, said: “This is really tremendous news of critical importance to our plans for creating a permanent year round transport museum in Fleetwood.  The Planning Permission will allow the Trust to proceed with submission to Heritage Lottery Fund in the northwest – for a grant towards the costs of returning this historic structure more or less to its original purpose.”

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3 Responses to Planning permission granted for Copse Road depot to be converted to tram museum

  1. Ken Walker says:

    This is good news indeed. I wish FHLT every success with their plans. It’s a pity that the depot cannot be linked to the “main line”, but at least 6 trams will be guaranteed a roof over their heads and the future of a 19th century tram depot will be assured.

  2. David Taylor says:

    I visited the depot on its open day. I am surprised only six trams are to be stored as I thought it was wide enough for Four across. the right hand doors seem large enough for two tracks and one through the Lefthand side. if six is the limit then what is to happen to the remainder. I do know there is room to expand through the rear so maybe we will see more in the future.

    I agree with Robin they should be allowed out onto the main line. Perhaps BTO will give us an article with a track plan.

    • Andrew Waddington says:

      David – I am sure that if anyone ‘in the know’ with regard to the plans for Copse Road submits any more information, pictures etc. to us then we will be more than happy to publish it on this website. We’re usually keen to accept contributions from anyone who can provide insider information (so long as it isn’t of a confidential nature of course), or who has seen anything that myself and Gareth have missed. Thanks for your feedback.