In Picture: Tamper at work in Blackpool

It may be the weekend but that doesn’t mean it’s a day off for the workers involved in the trackwork in Blackpool – far from it as the tamper was out once again being used on both the northbound track from Cleveleys to Fleetwood and then the southbound track. Unfortunately, as with an attempt earlier in the week to use the crossover at Cabin it wasn’t possible for the tram to use the crossover at Thornton Gate and so a road trip was required to transfer it onto the opposite track. This latest photo update shows us a few sights on Saturday 20th February 2021.

Orion Curve with new track having been laid at the end of the week.

This is the scene at West Drive to the north of Cleveleys. As we saw earlier in the week some of the between track surfacing has been removed for the trackwork to take place.

The tamper – which has been in Blackpool since the start of the week and we previously saw it at use south of Little Bispham – is seen at Rossall heading south on the northbound track having previously gone north on the same track.

With the tamper having failed to use the crossover at Cabin earlier in the week you would think that the decision would have been made not to try at Thornton Gate – but try they did! Here it is seen having got stuck on the crossover attempting to travel from northbound to southbound track.

The tractor unit from the low loader was used to pull the tamper back off the crossover.

It’s a flying tamper! In order to load it onto the low loader the tamper is elevated as seen in this image which allows the trailer to be reversed under.

The tamper is then lowered onto the trailer.

The tamper is then transferred to the southbound track and after unloading from the trailer waits to be lowered onto the tracks. (All Photographs taken on 20th February 2021)

The work south of Cabin has now been extended with trams not now due to resume between Harrow Place and Cabin until Monday 22nd February, one day later than originally planned.

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3 Responses to In Picture: Tamper at work in Blackpool

  1. says:

    Traditionally, Blackpool open track has used bullhead rail. From these pictures it looks like there’s now some flat-bottomed rail in there also. On the railways, bull-head rail was supposed to have been obsolete from about 1949, existing stocks being used up as and where needed, before flat-bottom rail was put in, at least on main lines. I believe that branch and minor lines continued to use part-worn bull head rail brought in from other places to replace worn-out bull head rail. That left London’s Underground services which appear to have largely continued with bull-head rail to this day. What’s the reason for all this? If bull-head rail has been obsolete for more than 70 years, where is this supply coming from? Are steel mills still rolling this type of rail nowadays and if flat-bottom rail is superior, how is it that new bull-head rail is being used in Blackpool now? And can anyone tell me if the rail sections used on the railways, the Underground and on Blackpool’s open-rail tracks are different in profile and weight from those previously in use?

  2. says:

    This work has overrun slightly and Harrow Place to Uncle Tom’s Cabin, originally due to reopen Sunday 21st February now reopens Monday 22nd instead.

  3. John1 says:

    To be accurate the destination is Cabin and has never been Uncle Tom’s Cabin. uncle Tom’s Cabin itself having disappeared more than afew years ago now, becoming Ma Kellys Showboat.

    Bullhead rail obviously isn’t obsolete if its still being used!

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