The Lancastrian Transport Trust has announced that one of its most prominent members, Philip Higgs, has resigned from his position as a Trustee of the Charity. Mr Higgs is a well known figure in transport preservation circles, notably featuring on the Channel 4 ‘Salvage Squad’ TV programme featuring the restoration of “his” tramcar, Blackpool Coronation car 304.
The recent move to return several preserved trams into the care of Blackpool Transport so that they can enjoy a more prosperous future as part of the town’s running fleet of historic vehicles, has led to this power change. In a brief statement posted on the LTT’s website, Mr Higgs explains: “My own business interest in Classic Bus North West is an obvious impediment to the relationship that now needs to develop between LTT and Blackpool Transport. A fantastic opportunity now exists to create a first class heritage tram collection and perhaps a future tramway museum facility in the resort which has been an aspiration of the LTT since it was founded”. He has also wished Bryan Lindop and everyone else involved in the plan to create a new charitable organisation to take care of the heritage trams in Blackpool – including nine former LTT cars – the best of luck with this venture. Presumably the various parties did not see a way forward whilst Higgs was involved with the heritage trams, hence his decision to leave the organisation.
Whatever individual views on Mr Higgs may be, there is no denying that he has made a considerable sacrifice, and it is fantastic to see him put the trams he fought to preserve first by acting in this way. Having helped to ensure the survival of 304 and other trams in the past, he has now helped to secure them a viable future on their home tramway and that should be applauded.