A visit to Crich Tramway Village – Sunday 3rd August

On Sunday 3rd August, British Trams Online writer Andrew Waddington paid a visit to Crich Tramway Village, primarily to see and ride on Blackpool & Fleetwood ‘Box’ car 40. As has been extensively reported on this site recently, car 40 is now back at Crich to help celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of electric trams operating at the museum and this was its third day back in service at this location since its return from Blackpool last month.

For most of the day a three car service operated with Box 40 joined by London United Tramways 159 and Blackpool ‘Boat’ 236 thanks to the glorious weather. However, two more trams did also appear on the mainline; Glasgow 1068 was brought out for a private party, and once this duty had ended the tram stayed out in normal passenger service as a replacement for 40. In addition, the museum’s access tram, Berlin 3006, also performed at least one journey late in the afternoon but spent much of the day on the spare track at Town End.

This visit was also your writer’s first opportunity to enjoy the enhanced tram stop at Glory Mine where visitors can now alight, and this location has opened up a whole host of superb new photo spots for the enthusiast, whilst some benches have also created a fantastic picnic spot with a great view of the surrounding countryside, as well as the passing trams. Although there is definitely room for improvement in terms of the area’s appearance and a few more facilities would be very welcome, this is definitely one of the most positive developments seen at Crich in the recent past and has really enhanced the museum as an attraction, for enthusiasts and the general public alike. Some changes to the displays in the Exhibition Hall also look good, with the centrepiece now featuring a number of tramcar trucks, whilst the smartly restored Edinburgh 35 also looks excellent in its new position.

Box 40 seems to have proved to be an instant hit with volunteers at the museum, operating on six consecutive days once it had debuted in service at its temporary new/old home. Mention also deserves to be made of the crew who worked on 40 on the day of my visit who were clearly very much enjoying the chance to work on this car, with the conductor’s customer service skills being especially worthy of praise. Although this wasn’t an event day, the site was fairly busy and hopefully there will be plenty more days like this over the summer, helping to ensure that 2014 will be a successful season for the museum.

More photos from August 3rd will be added to our gallery section in the next few weeks.

Blackpool & Fleetwood 40 takes a break between trips at Stephenson Place whilst operating in service on August 3rd. Note the newly applied advert vinyls on its side roof panels.

Running together for the first time since 2004, Box 40 and Blackpool 'Boat' 236 are seen together in the period street at the museum. (Photos by Andrew Waddington)

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12 Responses to A visit to Crich Tramway Village – Sunday 3rd August

  1. Gordon Burch says:

    Pleased to hear that you enjoyed your day on Sunday – me too! I got to crew each of the 5 service trams at various times during the day. Clarification of the status of Berlin 3006 may be of help to your readers who might like to ride the car; as our access tram it is scheduled for two trips, every day, at 11.30 and 14.30 (subject to the normal caveats)

  2. Colin says:

    You write that ‘Edinburgh 35 also looks excellent in its new position [in the Exhibition Hall].’

    I’ve not visited Crich recently, so can you confirm, as I understand, that the new position for this 1948 vehicle is in the place previously occupied by 1932 LCC1, i.e. in the 1930s decade section. If this is indeed the case, apart from being an inaccurate depiction, is this not a breach of the conditions of the Heritage Lottery Grant, which, after much hard work by the previous Curator, had to meet quite stringent conditions?

    • Andrew Waddington says:

      Colin – Edinburgh 35 is indeed now in the spot previously occupied by LCC 1, between Blackpool Balloon 249 and Den Haag 1147 (which incidentally dates from 1957!). I don’t think the decades are supposed to represent the exact vehicles, more the technology that they represent, or at least that is the case with the PCC. I’m not quite sure why the Lottery would be so concerned by this?

      • colin says:

        Andrew, I would think that the Lottery would at the very least be interested to know why the exhibition, detailed, I would imagine, quite specifically as part of the grant application, has been changed in no time at all to allow the exit and restoration of LCC1, an important technological milestone in the 1930s decade.

        • Tommy Carr says:

          So you would rather 1 sitting in the exhibition hall than to have it running? The whole point of the exhibition is to showcase the development of the tram – which it does.

  3. JOHN says:

    I doubt that Crich would be daft enough to flout funding conditions. These grants and conditions are failrly fluid so I wouldn’t concern yourself. Stop busy bodying and just enjoy the museum!

    • Christopher Callan says:

      Exactly. For once Crich should be commended. Vast majority welcome the changes to try and freshen up static exhibition area. The concerns expressed only serve to distract from the serious challenges faced for the organisation going forward.

  4. Andrew Blood says:

    Edinburgh 35 may have been built in 1948 but the design originated in the 1930s and therefore its positioning in the Exhbiiton Hall is correct. I welcome the changes to the Exhbition Hall, after all the last display remained unchanged for twenty years, hardly conducive to repeat visitors. The removal of LCC 1 was necessary for it to be restored, another welcome move whilst 35 now has a higher profile than at any time since its arrival at Crich. I personally would like to see minor changes to the Exhbition Hall every year to encourage visitors to return and see the new displays. Certainly the Lottery wont care that this is being done as it refreshes the display and keeps it interesting.

    • colin says:

      With your apparent inside knowledge that the Lottery ‘certainly…..wont [sic] care’, you’ve put my mind at rest, Andrew. No need for my continuing ‘busy bodying’ [sic], John. Tram enthusiasts have all the answers!

      • Ken Walker says:

        As regards breach of Lottery conditions (or not) is concerned, can we not just leave the museum powers-that-be and the Heritage Lottery Fund to do the worrying about that, and just enjoy the museum? I find it works for me!

  5. Crich Corrector says:

    Colin. If you must make such sweeping accusations please at least get your facts right.

    The “Great Exhibition Hall” was not funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund – that was the Stone Workshop project.

    • Colin says:

      Oh dear, looks as though I was perhaps wrong with my facts, Crich Corrector, although you’ve not said who did fund the project – I know, Google’s my friend.

      I accept what seems to be an error, although the basis of my comments (‘sweeping accusations’ in your opinion) remains intact, I would argue. Ok, I’m wriggling here!

      The sun’s shining – I’m off out!

Comments are closed.