New Supertram’s first trip to port

The new Bombardier super trams arrive in Fleetwood for engineering tests.
The new Bombardier super trams arrive in Fleetwood for engineering tests.

A SUPERTRAM glided into Fleetwood this week on its inaugural run to the port.

Albeit just for engineering and testing reasons, the gleaming state-of-the-art tram was a sight not to be missed.

The fleet of 16 trams will come into service with Blackpool Transport next Easter.

Blackpool Transport’s director of tramways Dave Hislop said: “We were completing gauging trials, checking the legalities of the system – the platforms heights, distances between platforms and the trams. A government official was there to witness the checks and all was correct.

“There is still the section from Fisherman’s Walk to Euston Park to complete but that won’t be done until late February, early March.

“We had some positive comments from people, they were very happy to see things moving forward.

Town Council chairman Alan Marsh said it was great to see the new trams in Fleetwood but the port was crying out for trams to be running sooner.

He said: “I certainly think they are magnificent and larger than I first envisaged.

“They are superb and will allow more people to come in and out of our fabulous town.

“But we are desperate to have trams running, we need them as quickly as possible, the sooner the better,”

The Bombardier Flexity 2 light rail vehicles are part of a £100m upgrade of the famous tramway.

It marks a landmark for the 126-year-old tramway which was threatened with closure without the £100m investment which has also seen the track refurbished.

The work needed to upgrade the system came with much upheaval in Fleetwood. Traders suffered and battled to save their businesses from closure whilst the work was carried out. There is still work to be completed in Fleetwood over the coming months including work on the overhead lines and the completion of the sub station. Tram enthusiast David Hunt added: “It’s wonderful to have the most modern tram in the world making its debut in Fleetwood.”

Among the innovations introduced on the Blackpool tram are conventional wheel set bogeys designed to offer a smoother ride.