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Light Rail news roundup 31st May 2024 Friday May 31, 2024

In this week’s news from the light rail sector –  Landmark anniversaries celebrated in Edinburgh and the West Midlands, Metrolink keeps Manchester moving during sporting celebrations, and offers ahead of Blackpool extension launch.


Recent rail strikes failed to prevent 35 light rail engineers and suppliers from getting together to discuss a range of topical issues.

The most recent meeting of UKTram’s Light Rail Engineering Group was taken online due to the difficulties members faced travelling to the planned venue, the Siemens rolling stock manufacturing site in Goole, East Yorkshire.

A planned ‘best-practice’ workshop that was planned at the site following the meeting has been rescheduled for November, and you can read more here.


A series of landmark projects, combined with the continued evolution of the Light Rail Safety and Standards Board, continue to deliver a host of benefits for tramway operators, their employees, and the travelling public.

The progress made towards reducing risks on UK tramways is highlighted in the latest update to LRSSB’s three-year business plan, which also offers a detailed insight into its future priorities.

The recently published document, available to download here, sets out how the expanding organisation aims to continue delivering on its core objective: ‘Prevent Incidents, Reduce Harm’. For the full story, click here.

West Midlands Metro  

The eye-catching emblem celebrating 25 years since the return of trams to the West Midlands has been officially unveiled this week by the region’s mayor and the talented primary school girl who designed it.

Nine-year-old Pargunn Kaur Birring, from Wattville Primary School in Birmingham, was invited to the West Midlands Metro for a special ceremony to help mark the momentous milestone in the network’s history, and to be among the first to see her artistic skills displayed on the side of a tram.

In the run-up to the tramway’s anniversary, primary school youngsters were invited to participate in a competition to develop a design celebrating the landmark anniversary, and you can read the full story here.

Edinburgh Trams 

As the operator prepares to celebrate a landmark anniversary, Edinburgh Trams is reflecting on its success to date.

From scooping top honours at several awards ceremonies to keeping the city moving during unprecedented weather conditions, its team has always shown exceptional commitment.

You can read more about Edinburgh Trams’ most memorable moments here.

Blackpool Transport 

To celebrate the highly anticipated launch of the Talbot Road Tramway extension, set to go into service on June 16, the operator has announced a variety of exciting activities in the run-up to the big day.

An array of special packages caters to all preferences and budgets, ensuring everyone can partake in the festivities.

From guided tram tours to family-friendly tram rides and even a driver simulator experience, there is something for everyone to enjoy, and you can find out more here.

Manchester Metrolink 

Public transport helped keep the city centre moving on Sunday as thousands of people turned out for the Great Manchester Run and a parade by Premier League champions Manchester City.

The hugely popular Great Manchester Run got under way in the morning, with 30,000 runners taking part and more than three times that number cheering them on into the mid-afternoon. And in the evening, over 100,000 City fans lined Deansgate to celebrate Pep Guardiola’s team’s fourth consecutive title triumph.

As expected, it was a bumper day on the public transport network with thousands of people travelling to, from and around the city centre over the course of the two big events, as reported here.

Tyne & Wear Metro

The £362m programme to build a new fleet of trains for the Tyne and Wear Metro has reached its half-way stage.

Stadler, the Swiss train manufacturer, has now built 23 of the 46 trains on order, and the latest landmark comes hot on the heels of the new Metro trains entering a phase of day-time test runs on the network.

The first new trams are set to enter service later this year.and you can read the full story here.

To be included in the next round-up, or the Members News section of the UKTram website, send your press releases to