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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 January 2006, 10:47 GMT
Step forward for resort tram plan
Trams in Blackpool
Trams have been a familiar sight in Blackpool for many years
Blackpool's bid to preserve its famous trams has been discussed with officials from the Department for Transport.

Both Blackpool Borough Council and Lancashire County Council believe a major refurbishment of the tram network is the only way to secure its future.

The funding decision depends on the Department for Transport's approval.

Blackpool Council's strategic director, Jackie Potter, said the meeting was "an important step down the line for the tramway bid".

Modern carriages

The meeting follows the recent announcement that the North West Regional Assembly (NWRA) is backing Blackpool's 88m tramway bid.

The renovation plan includes installing new tracks, a new electrical system and new modern carriages.

About seven million passengers a year use the tram system, which was the country's first electric tramway when the promenade track opened in 1885.

Passenger traffic is much heavier in summer and the traditional tramway is seen as one of the seaside town's key tourist attractions.

The system gained notoriety in 1989 in Coronation Street when Rita Fairclough's evil lover, Alan Bradley, died under the wheels of one of the trams.

The Blackpool scheme was one of a number of transport plans in the region approved by the assembly.




SEE ALSO:
Assembly backs resort's tram plan
06 Jan 06 |  Lancashire


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