In Pictures: Variotrams to New Addington

Since their introduction to the London Tramlink fleet in 2012 the Stadler built Variotrams have been very rare visitors to New Addington, however on Sunday 15th December all that changed with four of the seven Wimbledon-New Addington diagrams being in the hands of the newest trams on the system. This came shortly after the completion of the trackworks which had seen services suspended for over a week on the New Addington branch.

2555 pauses at Coombe Lane on the way to New Addington.

Another view of 2555, this time at Fieldway. Both photos taken on 15th December. (Both photos: Ian Buck)

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3 Responses to In Pictures: Variotrams to New Addington

  1. Jim A says:

    I wonder what modifications exactly were needed to the track to suit the Variotrams?
    Also, looking at the bottom centre of the second picture, does anyone know what the plastic panels between the rails are for? I’ve noticed these at various off-street Tramlink stops. They look as if they’re intended to make it easier to cross the tracks on foot, but they’re not in a place where people are encouraged to cross.

  2. Robert of Addington says:

    The Variobahns don’t like twisting both horizontally and vertically at the same time, and there were some sharp curves with changes in gradient in the middle (particularly Larcombe Close near Lloyd Park tramstop). The changes in gradient have been smoothed.

    The plastic panels after pedestrian crossings on ballasted track follow some tram/pedestrian collisions where the pedestrian was more injured than might otherwise have been the case because they were caught under the front of the tram between the rails beyond the edge of the crossing infill.

    • Tony Hampson says:

      Partially correct. The Panels between the rails are to provide assistance to the driver in ‘sighting’ a pedestrian crossing the tracks.

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