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What do you think of our attractive, reliable and efficient tram system?

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South Yorkshire Supertram - Why try harder (Fatboy Slim album cover)

[Sheffield City Region and SYPTE Mass Transit Questionnaire, 24 Sep 2018]

For over 20 years, Supertram has been connecting high numbers of people to jobs, education, shopping and leisure in Sheffield and beyond. Making over 12 million passenger journeys a year, it plays an important role in the wider public transport network within the Region and is recognised as an attractive, reliable and efficient mode of travel.

The tram system reduces congestion, helps improve air quality, and potentially could play an important part in future plans to better connect residents and businesses to our urban centres and major housing, retail, leisure and employment sites within the Sheffield City Region.

Sheffield Supertram consultation, Sheffield city region and SYPTE, 2018

[Sheffield’s Supertram could be axed and replaced by bus network, says survey, The Star, 25 Sep 2018]

Sheffield’s beloved Supertram network could be axed if transport chiefs fail to convince the government to stump up £230 million to renew the system.

South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive revealed the tram system could be closed because the current trams are ‘coming to the end of their working life’ after more than 20 years’ operation and there is not currently any money set aside to rebuild parts of the network or buy new vehicles.

SYPTE is now hoping to raise £230 million from the Department for Transport to allow the tram system to keep running for another 30 years – but warned if the money doesn’t come, the trams could become a thing of the past.

The transport group has now launched a consultation asking members of the public for their opinions on the future of the trams which will help inform their ‘business case’ to take to Whitehall.

“If we are unsuccessful in securing future funding for a mass transit solution the Supertram network may have to be closed and decommissioned, the cost of which would have to be covered by the region. Closure would also prevent any future network extensions.”

Written by beleben

September 26, 2018 at 9:00 am

3 Responses

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  1. It has obviously been a great surprise to all concerned thaht after 20 years of hard work the trams are worn out and need replacing.
    it is a pity that no-one thought about setting up a Capital Repair / Replacement Fund when the new trams were delivered 20 years ago and would now have something like £230,000,000 in it.
    Far be it from me to suggest that if they had done so the annual “profits” would have been some £23,000,000 a year less.
    Then there is the track and the electical infrastucture to renew …


    September 26, 2018 at 10:03 am

  2. Good grief! Did no one think of using the revenue to maintain the network? No wonder the trams were cheap! This, in a nutshell, is why nationalised industries never work. Nobody thinks of the future. Nobody bothers to invest. Everything keeps chugging along until it all wears out and collapses, because priority is always given to the short-term political imperative of keeping the costs down.


    September 28, 2018 at 7:14 am

    • In response to Moomo, sorry to say the problem is not restricted to “the nationalised industries”!
      As an example, the then current regional director was on a “profit” based bonus and so decided not to put funds on one side to pay for putting the rented office block back to the same state as when the lease started 10 years ago (i.e. dilapidations) or agreeing a lump sum payment in lieu, thereby increasing his profit and his bonus. He moved on just three months before the end of the lease and his successor was faced with a bill of £0.5 million! (How do I know this? I was the poor bloke who was tasked with agreeing the lump sum with the Landlord for a new regional director with no money in the pot – no pressure there then.)


      September 28, 2018 at 11:24 am

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