If you ever read the comments section of this website, or indeed many other places on the internet, you will be well aware that the story of Blackpool Balloon 710 is one which sees passionate exchanges from all sides. It’s a tram which remains owned by the Fleetwood Heritage Leisure Trust but as part of the disbanding of their collection they are still seeking a new owner for the tram which it seems is proving to be a pretty hard thing to do.
Balloon 710 – which retains its Purple and Yellow Metro Coastlines livery – has been in outside storage in Fleetwood since it left Rigby Road Depot in July 2011 and unfortunately the 11 years which have passed since have done nothing for its condition, potentially putting off any prospective buyers.
The tram’s biggest claim to fame, if you need reminding, is that it is the one that “killed” Alan Bradley in 1989 when he ran across the tracks in front of the Strand Hotel on North Promenade in an episode of ITV’s soap opera Coronation Street. Despite the fact this was 33 years ago there still seem to be a sizeable number of people who remember this which seems to give the tram almost iconic status amongst some.
Despite this the tram remains stored at Wyre Dock waiting for its saviour to come. With the Trust having to remove all their trams during 2022 if a new owner cannot be found it will have to be broken up for spares and scrapped. Anyone who is interested is advised to contact the Trust via John Woodman’s Tram Talk website at https://www.tramtalk.co.uk/.
- 710 is just one of the trams at Wyre Dock. With Railcoach 678 spoken for (East Anglia Transport Museum), Brush 637 (privately owned), Centenary 641 and Twin Car 673+683 also have had no news on new owners.