Thursday, January 30, 2014

A Bus Awash

I think this is the third repost of a favourite photo of mine, the Blackpool tram in the swirling waves from the Irish Sea but I also add another, of a bus attacked by the waves in Blackpool. When we were in Blackpool in 2008, sea defences were being improved and as I have not heard the city mentioned in the news over the period of wild and windy weather in England, I guess the work was successful. One seaside town had just completed sea defence work and the defences thoroughly failed. Shades of Japan's inadequate tsunami defences.

Blackpool now has very modern trams, replacing the quirky older models such as the open air boat tram, the open topped double decker, along with the more conventional double decker such as the one we road on, similar to the one below but older. Photos from the BBC.



This is the type of tram that you will now travel on in Blackpool, a tram made by Bombardier, which has made many trams here for use in Adelaide and our newest Melbourne tram. Finally I have cleared my confusion about Bombardier. It is Canadian company with its headquarters in Germany. There is only one tram route, along the seaside for 18 kilometres. A lot of work was done and money spent in preparation for the arrival of the new tram. The system was shut down for a whole winter and some. Photo from transportxtra.com


We rode on the double decker. It was fun at the top and front peering through the salt sprayed windows. The following photos are from Wikipedia.


The Blackpool to Fleetwood tram is the oldest continually operating tramway in the world, so I've heard. This is the boat tram, decorated for the Blackpool Illuminations. Imagine ten kilometres of lighting as a public spectacle, and using over one million lights. The Illuminations happen over the month of October.


An open topped single decker.
 

And an open topped double decker, so appropriate for English weather.


If you have not ridden on a Blackpool tram and you ever have the chance then do so, but be prepared for them being driven ponderously slowly in comparison to Melbourne trams.

14 comments:

  1. Your Australian tram is very comfortable and modern one. Our Silesian tamway operating system is 115 years old but most trams are worse than yours . Although our region has bought a lot of modern trams to avoid traffic jams in the rush hour.

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    1. Gosia, that is very old. I have not heard of your tram system and I have just checked and it is a very large system. Most European systems run very efficiently, even if their vehicles are older.

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  2. I completely forgot about the existence of double decker trams until your post. I now recall standing in one in 2000 in Hong Kong. The ceilings were very low...definitely not made for tall people.

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    1. Ad Rad, and they are still running in HK. They are a funny looking beast to watch, although I haven't been there in person. You would think there are some tall Hong Kong people.

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  3. Blackpool used to remind me of the 1950s, not my favourite era. Now it is cool!

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    1. Hels, most English seem a little embarrassed by Blackpool, and describe it as tacky, but as a tourist I really liked it.

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  4. I've never been to Blackpool! If I get back I shall pay a visit to take pics of trams!!

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    1. Fen, I think they will be all modern trams unless there is a special occasion. The sea and the beach are very fine, and the typical British pier is great......well, historically tacky.

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  5. The double decker tram looks oddly confusing, like a bus that someone stole the wheels from. It would take a bit of getting used to. The sight, I mean, riding on one would feel the same. I really like the illuminated boat tram, it's gorgeous! I think we should have those out here, going along the shoreline of each major city.

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    1. River, not good on Adelaide place names, but a tram running along the beach from Henley to Glenelg would be good.

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  6. Must put Blackpool on the bucket list! Interesting.

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    1. It's a really interesting place FC, with a large gay community, not that that would interest you. Just don't buy food, especially fish and chips on the seafront. There are some great and cheap pubs to dine at, if you can manage to place an order to someone with a Lancashire accent. We failed.

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  7. I did visit Blackpool once Andrew, I seem to remember pebbly beaches:) wish I'd been more interested in trams back then.. the older ones are tres joli oui !

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    1. Grace, you may be right, but I seem to remember sand beaches at Blackpool. Hmmm.

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Whenever I wish I was young again, I am sobered by memories of algebra.