Some pleasing news to report from the Crich Tramway Village where following the installation of the two new overhead support poles on the Depot fan by contractors Pod-Trak trams have now started to testing ahead of services resuming in the near future.
Trams haven’t been able to run at the museum since Tuesday 17th May when the ORR issued a prohibition notice over concerns with the condition of the infrastructure. The biggest concern was raised over two overhead poles on the depot fan which had severe corrosion. There was also another concern outside The Red Lion but this has since been rectified. After a thorough investigation into the condition of these poles it was decided that a full replacement would be needed and Pod-Trak were contracted to complete this work.
Pod-Trak are no strangers to work on tramways, they came to the rescue of the Heaton Park Tramway after the theft of their overhead and their equipment has also been used on the Blackpool Tramway extension.
The two new poles meet all modern safety standards and are attached to concrete blocks which are under the surface. This is said to make it easier to replace them in the future. The poles will also provide a secure support for the overhead.
After the installation of the poles it was possible to start tram testing on Tuesday 28th June with Leeds 180 and Blackpool 630 used to make sure everything was OK. Further tests are likely before decisions are made on a resumption of a tram service but it is hoped that this will be very soon.
Since the closure the museum has had limited opening with the last offering being weekends only with reduced price admission of £5 for adults. The exhibitions in the Stephenson Discovery Centre and Assembly Rooms, Workshop Viewing Gallery, Woodland Walk, Wakebridge displays plus the shops, café and Red Lion pub were all open but there was no access to the depots of Exhibition Hall.