For the first time since the early days of the tram-train service, Stagecoach Supertram have reverted to a four/three split of the Citylink vehicles with three now back with the tram wheel profiles. 399 206 returned to service with the standard tram wheel profile on Wednesday 9th September – believed to be its first use as a “tram” since it received the tram-train wheel profile back in October 2018.
As you may recall back in October 2018 when the tram-train service commenced there were four of the Citylink vehicles with wheel profiles allowing them to travel on Network Rail metals – namely 399 201, 399 202, 399 203 and 399 204. However, with firstly 399 204 and then 399 201 suffering accident damage it was necessary for an extra vehicle to go over to tram-train operation – and 399 206 was chosen.
But with 399 204 (which features part of 399 201) returning to service in January 2020 and a reduction in the tram-train service to only two an hour during the pandemic, having five of the seven strong class available for use on the service to Rotherham Parkgate was probably a little bit excessive and so 399 206 has now received the standard wheel profiles again.
On Wednesday 9th September 399 206 was allocated to the Yellow route between Middlewood and Meadowhall. This leaves 399 201–399 204 available for the tram-train service and 399 205–399 207 for normal tram services.