Fleetwood's outlet shopping centre is spreading its message through use of trams, buses and shelters as the season picks up speed. One of the Catch22Bus fleet has been decorated in an eyecatching wraparound scheme while a Blackpool tram has a renewed all over design that is pleasing to the eye.
Norbreck station shelter has been 'adopted' by Fleetwood Freeport - in a clever move to persuade its visitors to head north on the tram rather than southbound! This is the second tram shelter to gain a sponsor - with the Sands venue (soon to expand with new floors being added) taking charge of the southbound shelter immediately facing its venue.
These precedents may tempt other sponsors to similarly grab the opportunity
to give a new identity to more tram shelters along the promenade. However the likelihood of most (if not all) of these shoddy installations being replaced by a better quality product in the foreseeable future may defer decisions for the time being. Merlin Entertainment have taken over several of BTS double deck Trident models with colourful designs for the Tower Circus, SeaLife, Tussauds and Tower attractions. Again - the lack of double deck trams regularly running up and down the promenade mean the high visibility of Blackpool's traditional trams is unavailable. The Heritage Tour trams are intermittent in appearance and lack the frequency and range of service to make an economic case for advertising sponsorship.
More appropriate would be sampling of mid deck banner advertising of former times - Empire Pools, C&S Ales - to break up the monotony of blank cream space. For the moment though Blackpool's buses have the edge. Catch22Bus shows how things should be done with creative designs - good one Freeport.
All Images copyright : John Woodman