2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the first public tram service at Crich, which used horse-drawn tramcar Sheffield 15 until the overhead wires were in place, allowing electric trams to begin operating a year later. The Tramway Museum Society have now confirmed that they will celebrate this milestone with a low-key event on Monday 8th July, with a very special visitor due to be in attendance.
Appropriately, Sheffield 15 will be operating on this day pulled by a horse – an extremely rare midweek appearance by a horse car at the museum. It will be joined by an ‘enhanced’ service of electric trams. The event will be graced by the presence of the Society’s Patron, HRH The Duke of Gloucester, who will be invited to ride on 15 although this tram will also be used in normal passenger service during the day. This will be the first of three opportunities this year to ride on a horse-drawn tram at Crich, with the Edwardian Weekend following just a few weeks later, on 20th and 21st July. This popular event will also apparently include acknowledgement of the 50th anniversary of this tram becoming the first to carry passengers at this museum.
Crich looks set for a hectic three day period in early July, as this extra event follows the ‘Capital Weekend’ advertised for 6th and 7th July, which will include a commemoration of 80 years since the former of the London Passenger Transport Board. Unfortunately, details on both events are in rather short supply in the public domain, which may be a deterrent to potential visitors. However, at least the TMS are making an effort to recognise two historic events, and hopefully the Monday event will act as a warm-up for 2014, when the 50th anniversary of electric tram operation at Crich will hopefully be celebrated in a more extravagant style.