In Pictures: Beamish starts another year

Similarly to Blackpool, there isn’t much of a closed season for the UK’s hardest working heritage trams at Beamish with the museum open all year round (although at this time of year it is closed every Monday and Friday). 2020 has started for the trams much as 2019 ended with Sunderland 16, Blackpool 31, Oporto 196 and Sheffield 264 all currently available for service. Between one and two trams have been used each day so far in 2020, and at this time of year that is plenty as an open air museum in January doesn’t seem to top of everyone’s list of things to do plus there aren’t a huge number of school trips just yet.

In the workshops and the overhaul of Gateshead 10 (Grimsby & Immingham 26 as it still remains) will be continuing in 2002 with efforts being made to bring this lengthy – and ever increasing scope – overhaul to a conclusion. At this point it won’t be returned to the Gateshead livery with a repaint to follow in 2021 but it is said that it will be in possibly the best mechanical condition it has been in since first entering service! The wheelsets have now been re-tyred and repainted with work having now resumed on the bogie overhaul and the hope is that in the spring the bogies will be trial assembled before being dismantled for painting.

Oporto 196 is due to be withdrawn from service at some point this year and will then undergo a full overhaul. Newcastle 114 is currently out of service with the motors removed for routine maintenance.

Sunderland 16 was one of two trams in service on 11th January 2020 and is seen here at the entrance running anti-clockwise.

Inside the tram depot with Newcastle 114, Grimsby & Immingham 26, Blackpool 31 and Oporto 196. 114’s motors are seen undergoing maintenance.

Another look in the depot. Same trams, different angle! (All Photographs by Trevor Hall, 11th January 2020)

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