Saturday, 28 April 2012

Fylde 79 restoration progress

Some further steps forward on the restoration of Fylde Atlantean 79 (HRN99N) have been made in recent weeks and during a shunt at the BusWorks site to move Ensignbus sponsored restorations of RTW335 & Metropolitan MD60 into the newly designated workshop area, 79 was captured on camera. The extent of the strip down can be seen and the next stage is to grind off the corroded steel "top-hat" sections for replacement. The BusWorks has commissioned a local fabrication company to make the replacement Northern Counties style top-hat sections.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Ribble 1997 out on test

Former Ribble Bristol VRT 1997 (OCK997K) has been out on test runs today after its accelerator and fuel supply problems were remedied earlier in the week. Effort is now being focused on this bus to allow it to return to use in 2012.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Luff launches the Boat at Beamish

Daphne Luff, daughter of General Manager Walter Luff who introduced the streamlined fleet of trams to Blackpool in 1933, officially launched repainted Open Boat "233" at Beamish on Sunday 22nd April. After expertly smashing a bottle of champagne against the coupler socket, Daphne unveiled the legal lettering proudly showing her father's name "WALTER LUFF - GENERAL MANAGER". After the formal ceremony, invited guests were taken to Beamish town on the Open Boat for afternoon tea.
Later in the afternoon, shareholders were treated to a supervised Tram Driving Experience on the LTT's other preserved tram operating at Beamish, Balloon car 703(101).

Friday, 20 April 2012

Standard 143 returns!

Following discussions with Blackpool Transport, Standard car 143 has today returned to the LTT's Brinwell Road depot for restoration work to be completed. 143 had moved to Rigby Road back in August 2010 for completion of BTS' pledged commitment to the project. However, the preparation work required for the tramway upgrade and the realisation of the extent of heritage tram operation has resulted in the project to complete 143 for operation on the tramway being shelved.
In recognition of the original agreement and as an act of goodwill, Managing Director Trevor Roberts agreed to BTS donating the overhauled trucks and motors to the LTT. Following this positive step, arrangements were made to return 143 to Brinwell Road for completion work which will allow the Heritage Lottery Fund to "sign-off" the project which is a stumbling block towards our application to HLF for the proposed Thornton Gate project.
Although the reality of 143 not realising its original aim of returning to operation on the tramway is of course disappointing, we would like to place on record our thanks to Blackpool Transport for overhauling the trucks and motors which is a significant contribution to the project. The removal of 143 leaves Brush Railcoaches 624 & 632, Balloons 704 & 715, Coronation 304, OMO 8 and Rocket 732 stored at Rigby Road depot.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Boat launch details

Open Boat 605/233 will be officially launched at Beamish on Sunday 22 April. A small formal ceremony and handover will take place at 14:00 at the tram depot. All LTT suupporters are welcome to attend.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Beamish and the Boat

Boat car 605(233) entered service at Beamish on Thursday 12th April on the first day of the museum's popular Great North Steam Fair. It is the car's first passenger carrying duties since withdrawal from service in Blackpool back in October 2009 and subsequent preservation by the LTT. It was exactly 6-weeks previously that 605 had arrived at the museum and in the interim period the tram has been fully repainted and commissioned for duty.
On Sunday 22 April, an official launch of 605 is planned at the museum. Watch this blog for details...

Monday, 9 April 2012

Buses and Brinwell Road update

With all the tram news recently, we should not overlook developments at Brinwell Road and on the buses. Firstly, after some negotiation with our landlord, it has been decided to continue the lease on Brinwell Road depot and make changes to the configuration of the BusWorks' site. Nevertheless, the Brinwell Road depot has been tidied up and vehicles have been exchanged between the Blackpool and Weeton premises - transferring "non-runners" to Weeton to give greater flexibility at the Brinwell Road site.
The shunts have prompted a renewed effort to get some "quick-win" bus projects back on the road for 2012; Blackpool Routemaster 521, LUT Fleetline 97 and Ribble Bristol VRT 1997 - see our Facebook page for regular updates.

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Boat 233's makeover revealed

233 ventured outside this morning in order that coachpainter, Dave Newsome, could inspect his handywork in daylight. The tram looks superb and a final push to complete a number of details and commissioning will now follow - however, it is not yet rain-proof, so cannot venture out in inclement weather!
It is not too late to become a shareholder in this Open Boat with a number of exciting benefits. Click here to find out more...

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Boat 233 transformed!

Dave Newsome, the Busworks' painter, is making a great job of transforming the appearance of Boat car 605 into its original style livery (and renumbered 233), as recorded in these photos taken by Peter Barlow of the Beamish Tramway Group. It is now in familiar colours and progress today is centered on rubbing back the green and top-coating this. Cream to follow, then the details and lining in the dark green shade. Looking good - unlike the weather!