It was going to be the centrepiece of Heaton Park Tramway’s 40th birthday bash (scheduled to take place on Sunday 29th March), the relaunch into service of Stockport 5 following the completion of its overhaul. But after the restrictions put in place as a result of the Coronavirus (one of these days I well get to write an article where I don’t have to type that word!), 5 will have to wait a bit longer to meet its adoring public.
5 has not run in service since 2013 when it was taken out of service for an overhaul which has ended up taking a lot longer than expected but as with so many heritage vehicles more work was discovered than anticipated. During this time as well as a full overhaul the tram has been spruced up and even managed a trip back to its home town in 2018 for display during a special event. The hard work of the small band of volunteers at the Heaton Park Tramway can be seen in the finished product and 5 is sure to be a popular tram when it does enter service.
Shortly before the Heaton Park Tramway was closed, Stockport 5 underwent testing and training had started for tram crews. There were a few final snagging works to be completed but apart from those it was all good to go with the plan that it would be launched at the 40th Birthday Bash. Alas, that is not to be but it is hoped that a new date will be arranged in the future and 5 will return to the rails once more.
Its been seven years since it last run in service so a few more months shouldn’t cause us too much despair!