Standard 147 of 1924


147 was built by the Hurst, Nelson & Co. Ltd, Motherwell, in June 1924 as one of a batch of 42 double deck Standards supplied between 1923 and 1929. The majority of Standards were built (or rebuilt from older trams) by Blackpool Corporation in their own workshops; however seven were supplied by the Scottish firm of Hurst Nelson who had previously supplied trams to Blackpool in 1902. When new the tram featured open drivers platforms and open balcony upper deck ends, and was finished in a red, white and teak livery.

This tram entered service during the summer of 1924, and the class were initially used all year round on the town routes to Layton, Marton and Central Drive and along Lytham Road, as well as providing extra services on the Promenade during the summer. The new streamlined trams delivered in the 1930’s brought levels of comfort to the fleet not seen before, and the still young Standard cars were quickly upgraded with drivers windscreens and, for the majority, enclosed upper deck saloons, and were repainted in the new green and cream livery. The Standard trams dominated the circular Marton route until the late 1940’s when they were superseded by upgraded single deck cars, but a dwindling number survived to provide summer season extras until final withdrawal of the type in 1966. 147 had been one of the last three Standards in use and after withdrawal was sold for preservation in 1967 to the Gerald E. Brookins Museum of Electric Railways in Ohio, USA.

147 was never used in the USA, and 33 years after leaving it was returned to Blackpool in October 2000 for restoration under the auspices of a small team including Michael Airey, Body Shop manager at Blackpool Transport, after whom the restored tram is now named.