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  • Writer's pictureJohn Woodman

Rigby Road Depot This Morning

John Woodman

A pleasing display of 'heritage trams' fronted Rigby Road tram depot today - all showing attention to their appearance and free of lingering smears on external bodywork. Apparently the levels of interest being shown by the public in the depot's still sizeable fleet will warrant year round site tours in addition to the heavily marketed 'heritage tram tours' now spawning niche rides. Need for further funding to replace or repair the tram depot roof area is still very much of concern to both BTS and the Heritage Team. Given that the building and its infrastructure is in ownership of Blackpool Council one would have thought that submissions to financing subventions of various kinds being profferred by various Government departments and agencies should be able to cover the capital costs of this essential work, as opposed to reliance solely on donations from a dwindling pool of enthusiasts and heritage contributors.

below : a 'taster' of the eclectic tram collection contained inside Rigby Road Depot as displayed on the depot fan this morning - sparkling from attention by the Heritage Team.

There is still a long way to go to realising the professional quality of visitor attraction which Rigby Road's tram history rightly deserves. A look at the prospectus offered online of San Francisco's Market Street Railway (an operating light rail and bus system with cable car adjuncts among many other transit attributes) is to realise how far Blackpool needs to go in order to capitalise on its own world renowned electric tramway. Equally relevant are the online presentations and marketing of American 'trolley' museums with much much more than simple listings of car collections. These can provide indicative marketing strategies fit for IT savvy audiences of all ages. Certainly the attention given to workshop projects and ongoing restoration of individual cars/trams is highly pertinent in Blackpool's case.

Still the Heritage Team at Rigby Road are making a big difference from limited resources (and staff) and all power to their efforts in the months and years ahead.


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