New Blackpool tramway passes five million journeys
Blackpool’s revamped tramway system has passed the five million journeys milestone in less than a year.Ticket sales from the trams show that 5 million journeys have been recorded so far since April 2016, building on the increases in passenger journeys since the tramway re-opened in 2012 and topping the five million passengers mark for the first time since 1994.
The good news comes as work progresses to extend the tramway from the Promenade up to Blackpool North train station.Not only are more people using the tram network, but passenger satisfaction is also up, with 96 per cent of people surveyed saying they enjoyed the experience in the latest figures by the Department for Transport.
Cllr Christine Wright, chair of Blackpool Transport, said: “It is fantastic news that more and more people are choosing to use the tramway network to get around the Fylde coast.“Its success varies from daily commuters trying to beat the traffic, to holidaymakers enjoying the ease at which the trams get them between attractions. Using the tram is not only environmentally friendly, but it is also an enjoyable way to get around and good value for money.
“It is great news that more people are regularly using the trams, and hopefully that success can grow even further with the extension of the line.”Cllr Gillian Campbell, deputy leader of Blackpool Council, added: “Blackpool tramway is one of the fastest growing light rail networks in the country and there are no signs of it slowing down. Our tramway is known throughout the world and it is fantastic to see more and more people using it.”
Jane Cole, managing director of Blackpool Transport, added: “The team at BTS have worked very hard over the last two years to design the tramway operation around the needs of the customers who use it.“We get very positive feedback about how our staff deliver a fantastic customer experience and the value for money of the 24 hour ticket. The Tramway has been the number one attraction in Blackpool on Trip Advisor for the last two years and it won ‘highly commended’ in the 2016 Global Light Rail Awards for ‘Vision of the Year’.
“We will have two new trams joining the fleet this year in preparation for the capacity needed to grow the tram patronage even further."The 11 mile tramway runs from Starr Gate in Blackpool up to Fleetwood Ferry, operating a service every ten minutes during the summer season.
The tramway re-opened in 2012 following a major £101m replacement of the track, creation of a new tram depot and arrival of 16 new Flexity2 trams. The new trams have level boarding, making them accessible for all disabled users, allowing for faster journey times and a more energy efficient service. At the same time, the previous stock of heritage trams still run as a tourist attraction along the same network during the summer.