Huge rise in tram passenger trips

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Tramway bosses are hoping to bust the 5m passenger mark this year after a stunning 20 per cent surge in customers.

New figures, released by the Department for Transport, show the tramway carried 4.9m passengers between March 2015 and March 2016.

We are operating a 10-minute service, up from every 12

That is 600,000 up on the previous year.

Revenues on the route also rose, up nearly 10 per cent to £6.1m.

The news comes less than 12 months after Blackpool Transport came under criticism for heavy overcrowding on the services.

The response – introducing extra trams and from this summer a service every 10 minutes during the day – was hailed in the report as a major factor in driving the increase.

Blackpool Transport bosses paid tribute to the hard work of staff in driving the increase in both passenger numbers and customer safisfaction and promised further improvements.

And the firm is considering rolling out free wifi on the tramway to encourage more commuters out of their cars.

Service Delivery Director Bob Mason said: “We do of course keep track of our passenger numbers.

“This report highlights just how positive the figures have been. We are constantly looking at how the service is being operated and looking what we need to match demand. This year it is easier than ever to use the tram.

“We are operating a 10-minute service, up from every 12.

“You don’t really need a timetable to catch a tram now. You can get to a stop and know one is going to be arriving soon.”