Following a highly succesful three-week stay at Beamish, the Living Museum of the North, Birkenhead 20 returned home to the Wirral heritage tramway on Wednesday 25th April. The tram had arrived at Beamish on March 30th to participate in the Great North Steam Fair, which was held between 12th & 15th April.
20 made its last appearance on the Beamish tramway on Saturday 21st April when it was used for a special visit by members of the Merseyside Tramway Preservation Society, who own the tram and restored it to its current condition. After that it was returned to depot to be prepared for the journey home, which included removal of the trolley mast and destination boxes. The mast had remained in situ for the journey from Birkenhead to Beamish but unfortunately became damaged in transit, although this was swiftly rectified on its arrival, hence the decision was made not to risk a repeat incident.
Birkenhead 20‘s short visit to the North East has been another triumph for the MTPS following the equally succesful loan of Liverpool 762 to Blackpool in 2010, and further cements the Society’s excellent reputation as an extremely friendly and co-operative organisation with a superb collection of beautifully restored tramcars. Hopefully this will set the scene for further loan deals, and with Beamish Museum keen to continue to welcome visiting trams, perhaps it won’t be too long before another car makes the trip from Merseyside to this museum. We can but hope!