Nominations open for Tram of the Year!

Yes, it is once again that time of year – the time when we start the process of anointing the new winners of the British Trams Online Tram of the Year contest! Last year the winners were Douglas Bay Horse Tramway 36, Stagecoach Supertram 399 202, the Statfold Barn Railway and Statfold’s launch event of Burton & Ashby 14 but just what has done enough in the past 12 months to walk away this time around? Well, it’s over to you as for the next seven days nominations are open for you to help form the shortlists!

As for the past few years we are seeking nominations for four categories:

Tram (traditional)

Tram (modern)



You can nominate as many times as you wish for as many categories you wish but please give reasons for your nomination to help us when we make the final decision on the shortlists. As always we are looking for trams, tramways and events which have done that something a little bit special over the past 12 months – and it is entirely up to you as to what you consider something special! It is probably fair to say that on the whole this year has been more steady than spectacular but we are sure there will still be trams, tramways and events that take your fancy for this year’s contest!

As a brief reminder the categories are as follows:

Tram (traditional) of the Year

A category that has very much been dominated by Blackpool trams over the years but in 2017 for the first time the award went over to the Isle of Man with Douglas Bay Horse Tramway 36 the lucky winner having been the first tram returned to service after overhaul since the start of Isle of Man Transport’s operation. Other recent winners have included trams on loan, re-entering service after restoration and even special repaints.

But what has done that something special in 2018? You tell us!

Tram (modern) of the Year

2017 saw Stagecoach Supertram 399 202 becoming the first modern tram not from Manchester Metrolink to win this category as it had become the first of the class to run in public service.

And now its over to you to decide if there are any modern trams which deserve to be nominated in 2018!

Tramway of the Year

The Statfold Barn Railway was the winner for this category in 2017 with its short demonstration tramway opening during the year to show off the repatriated Burton & Ashby 14. Over the years since this category was introduced the winners have been spread across the country with only Blackpool being crowned twice.

So, is there a tramway which you think has been above the rest in 2018? Don’t forget we aren’t looking for the tramway which has operated the best service (there are other awards for that) but just that tramway which you have enjoyed over the past year. Nominate now to let us know!

Event of the Year

The launch of Burton & Ashby 14 at the Statfold Barn Railway was the event which gained the most votes last year with other recent winners including the 140th Anniversary of the Douglas Bay Horse Tramway, the 130th Anniversary of the Blackpool Tramway and Electric 50 at Crich in 2014.

Are there any events you want to see on the shortlist from this year? If so please nominate now!

There are three ways you can submit nominations this year:

1. Leave a comment below. Juts remember if you aren’t already registered for the blog you will need to do so first.

2. Email

3. Leave a comment on Facebook.

You can also find out more about Tram of the Year on the dedicated page.

Nominations are open from now until Saturday 1st December with voting then opening on Sunday 2nd December. Voting will remain open until Saturday 12th January 2019.

2017’s Tram (Traditional) of the Year was Douglas Bay Horse Tramway 36. The tram was captured on 5th September 2018 in this shot on the promenade in Douglas. (Photograph by Gareth Prior)

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4 Responses to Nominations open for Tram of the Year!

  1. David M says:

    Lots going on this year, but my nominations are:

    Traditional Tram: MER Ratchet Car 14
    Superb restoration in a volunteer / MER staff co-operative effort to provide the tramway with an example of a non-air brake fitted car.

    Modern Tram: Sheffield Supertram 399 202 (again)
    To celebrate the launch of the service to Rotherham at last and because that is the car I have traveled on!

    Tramway of the Year: Douglas Bay Tramway
    To mark the end of an era – the traditional line alignment and car sheds, plus investment for a sound future.

    Event of the Year: MER 125 week

  2. Chris Callan says:

    With what was has felt a pretty dreadful/difficult year for many of the mainland tram operations / museums with little to be up beat about suppose inevitable the Island features heavily.

    Traditional Tram: MER Ratchet Car 14
    Modern Tram: CAF West Midland Metro Car 31 (for its Batteries & Livery)
    Tramway of the Year: Manx Electric Railway
    Event of the Year: MER 125

  3. Paul D says:

    Difficult to disagree with the Isle of Man orientated nominations above.

    Tram: There were no significant restoration or relaunches at any of the Museums, while in Blackpool, it could be argued that Boat 227 and Birkenhead 20 did too little to late, but having said that 20 did more this year than the winner Douglas 36 did last year, so I’d say it’s worthy of a place on the shortlist.

    LRV: I can only think of Sheffield 204 for being the first in public service on the Tram-Train route (we can’t blame it for the accident later the same day)

    Tramway: A nod to Seaton for the opening of the new terminus building being the only significant development completed at any of the heritage lines during the year, and it’s worth mentioning Sheffield Supertram for finally starting Tram-Train operations (the delays were mostly not the operators fault) but I also look across to the Manx Electric for the 125 years of service.

    Event: again the Manx Electric 125th anniversary was the stand-out event of the year for me. The Crossbench evening tour and the Cavalcade being particular highlights.

  4. John1 says:

    My twopenneth

    Tram (Traditional)
    Birkenhead 20. Whilst a late player it becomes the first traditional 4 wheel open topper to operate in service on a light rail system, and the first in Blackpool since the upgrade. cardiff 131 was 4 wheel but strictly engineering.

    Tram (modern)
    399202 for being the first service car to Rotherham.

    Sheffield for inaugurating Tram train

    Douglas Horse Tramway last day. The end of an era, but also the start of a new life for the tramway.

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