Ex-Exeter Corporation Tramways no. 19, now part of the Seaton Tramway fleet, has returned to service following the completion of its overhaul. The tram had missed the majority of the 2019 season allowing this work to take place – its biggest overhaul since entering service in 1998 but is now back out seeing almost daily use for the popular Polar Express specials.
19 is one of three trams at Seaton which are rebuilds of first generation trams with this one having a very local feel having previously operated on Exeter Corporation Tramways. Originally numbered 19 in the Exeter fleet it was later renumbered 21 and following withdrawal followed the usual path of being sold on for further use before being rescued for restoration. Having been discovered in 1984 by the Mid Devon Tramway Preservation Society it eventually made its way to Seaton ten years later being completed in 1998. To keep with its Exeter origins it was painted in its original livery and retained its original number too.
It was withdrawn from service earlier in 2019 for the overhaul to take place and with this work now completed it has settled back into service. It sees use most days for the Polar Express alongside other single deck saloons, 14, 15 and 16.
Now that 19 is back in use the workshop team are likely to turn their attention to repairs on 12 which had to be taken out of service at the end of the main season this year with a fault. Work has yet to commence on this tram but it shouldn’t be too long before they do.