Back in 2014, Crich Tramway Village allowed enthusiasts to view a series of shunting moves with various trams being moved in and out of the Exhibition Hall in connection with some changes to the displays within. The day, dubbed ‘The Big Shunt’ was considered a great success – and now in 2017, they’re doing it again! This time however, the shunting will take place on the last day of the main operating season, and so tram rides and the other attractions the museum has to offer will also be available as normal.
Sunday 5th November is the last day of the year when Crich Tramway Village will be open to the public, and it is on this day that the next ‘Big Shunt’ is to take place. This is part of the advertised Winter’s Eve Folklore Festival being held across the final week of the 2017 season.
Details of what exactly will happen on November 5th are still a little sketchy, but based on the last such event it is expected that a number of trams which rarely appear outside will be moved around, creating some unusual photographic opportunities. The primary purpose of this shunting is to prepare for the depot refurbishment works being carried out during the closed season, which is likely to see numerous trams moved to the Exhibition Hall for temporary storage over winter whilst the work is being undertaken. It will be interesting to see how everything is fitted in to the available spaces and no doubt things will become a lot clearer on this day!
2017 has already been quite an interesting year at Crich with lots of shunting, particularly to accomodate the new arrival Bournemouth 85. This tram was, incidentally, moved into the Exhibition Hall on Saturday 23rd September – just a week after its starring role on ‘Tram Day’ – and now stands on a specially laid section of track. Its installation in the building saw a number of other trams moved, including Leicester 76, with 85 now occupying the space where 76 previously stood. Being narrow gauge, the Bournemouth car is unlikely to be extracted again for the foreseeable future, but no doubt the next major shunting operation will provide some other novel sights and plenty of interesting photo opportunities.