Blackpool Brush Car 623 / 286

Blackpool Brush Car 623 / 286

Built in Loughborough, Brush car 286 entered service in July 1937.

286 received several modifications over the years. It lost its sliding roof panels in 1964. The roof windows were panelled over in 1973. With the twin destinations blinds replaced with the single indicator at the same time. Roof advert boxes were fitted in 1975 and 286 was renumbered 623 in 1968.

In 1986, 623 received an advert livery for Sequins night club that lasted until 1987 when it was repainted with an advert for the Viking Hotel. 623 underwent a major overhaul in 1989 when Ex-OMO windows were fitted, together with bus seats returning to service in 1990 in an advert livery for ICI Hillhouse.

623 was damaged by a fire in the depot in October of that year. Repaired in time for the new season, 623 was repainted in an advert livery for Blackpool Zoo and the Sandcastle. Revised adverts for the Sandcastle followed in 1992. In 1995 623 was repainted in an advert livery for Main Street night club. The roof boxes were removed at this time.

In 1997, 623 received an advert livery for Pleasure beach show ‘Mystique’. An updated advert appeared in 2000.

In 2004, 623 was stored, returning to service in 2008 in Wartime livery. In 2009 it operated as the Tram Driving Experience tram until November 8th when it was withdrawn.

In May 2010, Brush car 623 and Balloon 702 went on loan to the Museum of Museums at Trafford where it remained until November 29th 2011 when it transfered to Heaton Park.

It was officially launched into service on January 22nd 2012, becoming the first Brush car to operate in preservation. 623 operated regularly as the “Wet weather” choice of tramcar until June 2017 when it returned to Blackpool on loan, for the 80th anniversary of the Brish Cars. A year later 623 was moved back to Heaton Park reprising its role on cold and rainy days.

623’s interior, featuring former Route master bus seats.

623 at the Museum of Museums.