Standard car 143 returned to Rigby Road on 18th August after a seven year absence during which it has received a thorough restoration to original 1924 condition by its owners, the Lancastrian Transport Trust, at their Brinwell Road depot in Blackpool. The restoration of 143, the surviving parts of which where in a very poor condition when preserved by the LTT in 2002, has involved the fabrication of a brand new underframe and the construction of a completely new top deck. The LTT have spent upwards of £80k restoring 143 to its original un-vestibuled condition and with longitudinal bench seating on both sides of the lower deck - a condition not represented by any of the other preserved Blackpool Standard cars.
The move of 143 from the LTTs Brinwell Road premises to Blackpool Transport's Rigby Road depot was not without its complications, the biggest of which was manourvering 143 from its position in the corner of the depot to a position in line with the main doorway of the building. The trucks, overhauled by Blackpool Transport, were collected from the Fitting Shop and brought to Brinwell Road, where the car body was raised to allow the bogies to be rolled beneath. Once on its trucks it was winched aboard the the Scotts low loader, and then moved via Brinwell Road, Cornford Road, Clifton Road, Preston New Road, Oxford Square, Park Road, Bloomfield Road and Lytham Road to Blackpools tram depot, where it was unloaded the following morning.
The level of restoration undertaken by the LTT can be seen on the LTT fotopic site and on 143's blog