It has been a long 8-months with seemingly no visible progress on Standard 143. However, behind the scenes has not been inactive. Work on preparing the double deck Balloon cars with widened doorways for the post-2012 tramway has occupied the workshops over the winter months and there is a growing uncertainty over the role of the 'vintage' trams on the upgraded tramway. Both of these issues have resulted in Blackpool Transport parking up 143 over the winter months.
However, a kit of body parts required to complete the bodywork restoration of 143 now exists and awaits assembly. For example, the open balcony stanchions and panelling, the balcony staircase panelling, staircase grab rails and balcony seat brackets and the end destination boxes.
All of these are ready to be delivered to Rigby Road depot for fitting to 143.
We are currently discussing with Blackpool Transport an arrangement whereby the LTT would contract BTS to do the work over the summer months.