The Fylde Transport Trust have recently released a set of new books which as well as providing some reading for enthusiasts also have the added bonus of providing a source of fundraising for their restoration projects on both trams and buses. Two of the three books released have a tram connection and we take a look at both in this article.
The first book released was The Fylde Transport Trust collection and this book is exactly what it says it is on the cover! The A4 sixed landscape book gives a potted history of the trams and buses in the FTT collection accompanied with various photos of the vehicles as they are today. With the FTT tram collection having expanded in 2020 with the merger of the Blackpool Heritage Trust trams there are plenty of trams to look at starting off with the soon to be pride of the fleet – Standard 143.
Railcoach 279 (can you have two prides of the fleet?!), Balloon Cars 703 and 715, Brush Cars 621, 624, 632 and 634, Coronation 304, Towing Car 671, OMO 8, Jubilee 761, Centenary 645 and Illuminated feature cars the Rocket and the Hovertram also feature in the first half of the book.
The remainder of the book then goes into details on the buses in the FTT collection, including those familiar buses regularly seen on the exhibition circuit around the north west in recent years as well as those waiting for their chance to be restored.
With excellent photos included and all the basic information you need to know about the vehicles this book is recommended for anyone with an interest in the FTT fleet and is a good way to help them achieve their objectives.
The second book released was a more pictorial album concentrating on the Blackpool Tramway during the last 10 years of traditional operation. Blackpool Trams: Traditional Swansong is not a book if you want a detailed history of the tramway during that decade but features many stunning images of the tramway as it was.
Featuring popular Twin Car 672+682 in its Metro Coastlines on the cover it also includes the vast majority of the tram that ran during that period, including behind the scenes photos of trams in the works, Brush Car 636 on its return to test an experimental truck and trams starting to leave Blackpool for their new lives in preservation.
Another highly recommended book this will bring back good memories for any Blackpool tram enthusiast to see the tramway as it was as the old order started to fade away.
* Both books are available through Videoscene at https://www.videoscene.co.uk/books-and-magazines-new-releases-1 priced at £10.00 (Fylde Transport Trust Collection) and £14.00 (Blackpool Trams: Traditional Swansong). A third FTT book: Routemasters in Blackpool is also available at the same link.