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  • Writer's pictureJohn Woodman

Fleetwood tram project talks begin

The Trust's 2017 Calendar on sale at Blackpool Visitor Centre, Brooks Collectables on Waterloo Road and Toys2Save shop opposite Cleveleys Tram Stop. Copies can be purchased on our Shop and also through EBay Collectables.

Following a series of meetings with interested Principals over the past months, the FHLT have received confirmation from Associated British Ports that planning has begun for the regeneration of Wyre Dock. The Trust have put forward their conceptual design and preference for a waterfront site which would allow the creation of a permanent display and interactive visitor attraction.

Recent discussions in Fleetwood involve the Local Authority and Town Council who

support the Trust's aims and engaging both with ABP management team and their development advisors. The Trust's objectives will coalesce within a mixed use commercial scheme with significant leisure content to attract visitors year round. An internal running line within the scheme is to be considered. This could allow some of the Trust's collection to provide heritage tram rides, adding a further dimension to Fleetwood's attractions for transport enthusiasts. Priority is now being given to an interim sheltered storage facility in which the two Balloon cars (710/726) and possibly two single deck trams can be returned to operating condition. ABP are keen to see any regeneration scheme for Wyre Dock to benefit from the Trust's longstanding aims in Fleetwood. The FHLT also anticipates inclusion of a local bus restoration element within its plans hence our new logo.

The Trust will also open up discussion with Blackpool Transport Services on the future of 761 and its return to an operating role through private sponsorship. Centenary 641 is to remain in its display position on the Promenade - albeit with a 'new look' in 2017. Brush Car 290 is being held at Rigby Road pending the formal ceremony of the opening of the North Station extension in 2019.

The Trust's Centenary car 643 (donated by the Partington Family) has been launched at a special event held at the Rugby special education school this weekend and is now providing a new social role for which its internal layout is well suited. A new version of Blackpool Corporation Transport's green and cream colours have been professionally applied to the tram - retaining the link with the resort. It also retains its fleet number and new BTS decals courtesy of Blackpool Transport. The project was coordinated by the FHLT with the sponsors over the past six months. Images to follow. In the meantime :

Sneak preview of another 'bizarre' paint job on Trailer T7 ahead of its display next year in Fleetwood. PS ; the painting is not finished !

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