The new season on the Douglas Bay Horse Tramway will be starting on 6th April 2023 but when it does it will once again be only running part of its former route as the section between Broadway and the Sea Terminal is still to be constructed. A recent debate at Tynwald again mentioned the prospect of returning the trams to the Sea Terminal but it seems there are currently no definite plans of when funding may be sought for this to be built.
At the risk of covering old ground, a little bit of recent history for you. As part of the redevelopment of Douglas Promenade there were many proposals for the Horse Tramway and much debate over what would happen. Eventually Tynwald agreed to a single track tramway – with passing loop – on the section between Broadway and the Sea Terminal and this was even funded. In fact it went through Tynwald more than once and was approved on each occasion. However, the Prom redevelopment ran into problems and went over budget which led to the single track section of the tramway to be put on the back burner, although with the promise it would be a decision that was returned to in the future.
Indeed, last year current Infrastructure Minister, Chris Thomas, said that they he would bring the proposals to Tynwald but in this latest debate he was unable to say just when this would be.
Mr Thomas said: “The single line section of tram track to sea terminal was removed from the Douglas promenade project in April 2020. A separate project business case has been developed with options, I’ve seen it. Funding through the budget process would be required but Tynwald’s fiscal position is tight at present. I am unable to advise when that scheme may be brought forward.’
As you were then and for the foreseeable future the tramway will remain a double track line between Derby Castle and Broadway.