Terrific transport at Tram Sunday 2016

Having written a preview for this fine event, I was duty bound to go. Robert (10) was also keen. With £10 family ticket in hand, we caught the service 3 bus to the town centre and then jumped on the tram at North Pier for the trip to Fisherman’s Walk, Fleetwood.

On our arrival things were already in full swing. It was by now mid-day and Robert was understandably hungry, so we decided to start with food. Making slow progress through the throng, we dodged onto the shoreline road and walked down to the excellent Ferry Café for retro fish and chips. Robert ate a whole fish (nobody would want it to have died for nothing) and commented on how fresh it was, the taste being so distinct. So worth the money!

The café is opposite the Euston Gardens where the circus skills class was in full swing, featuring more mini-stilt walkers than one could shake a stick at. Meanwhile an old time jazz band played in the background, while the local bugle band was warming up in the foreground. Fight! No! There did seem to be a bit of a conflict when the bugle band set off and found two tricycle mounted sound-systems coming the other way. In my view the bugle band won.

This took place in the ‘bus’ section of the display vehicles (anyone remember this is a transport festival?), where Blackpool Transport Services was showing off its new state-of-the-art double-deck Palladium bus. These have free wi-fi and leather seats, no less. They’re quite a step up in quality.

I do like the balance that this event has and the opportunity it gives to local charities and community groups to get their stuff out there. Also small retailers: Robert wanted a model tram and I picked up a copy of Cervantes’ Don Quixote for £1, which is a book one is supposed to read before one dies. The book guy turned out to be a big Tolkien fan; I warned him not to watch the Hobbit movies. There are also hobby groups (model planes – love them), street musicians, street entertainers in whacky costumes and lots of fairground rides. Genuinely something for everyone.

The roads were getting uncomfortably crowded now and Robert was getting tired, so after ice cream and a carousel ride, it was time to wend back to Fisherman’s Walk for the tram back. On reaching there, we found both a heritage balloon tram and a modern Flexity 2 vehicle awaiting us. The guy with the balloon had to shoo people away as it was only carrying a special tour.

However, the crowded platform was easily accommodated in the Flexity 2 and we were soon whizzing back towards Blackpool with our spoils. Back in town, we changed onto the service 14 and arrived home after a nice trip out.

Congratulations to all involved with Tram Sunday; it’s a wonderful event and a credit to the community. We’ll be back next year and hopefully we’ll be able to get round more stuff. The threatened museum was open for free and I know it’s always worth a look in; however, the call of fish and chips was too loud.

You can also read all about the SpareParts Arts Festival which is in its third year having joined forced with Tram Sunday back in 2014 right here.

Images courtesy of David Simper and Red Snapper Photography.

Reclaim Blackpool - Mapping Sexual Harrasment
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    I have worked in the housing and transport professions for several local authorities, specialising in policy, strategy preparation and bid writing. Having always had an interest in film, the visual arts in general, theatre, music and lterature, I thought it would be good to combine the writing experience with these interests to contribute to altBlackpool. In addition to writing, my hobbies include watercolour and pastel painting, photography, woodwork, cycling and vegetable gardening.

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