Loftus tram museum reopening marred by power supply damage during wild weather

Another part of normal life is back on track with the reopening of the Sydney Tramway Museum at Loftus after a five month shutdown.

More than 90 people visited the museum on Sunday morning before rain arrived.

However, the day was marred by the power supply on the National Park Line being damaged by falling tree branches during wild weather later that night.

The line will be out of service until repairs are completed "in coming weeks".

The Sutherland Line, along with the museum, will be open in the interim.

The museum is open only on Sundays at this stage, but hopes to reopen on Wednesdays again in the near future.

A range of safety measures in the museum's Covid Safety Plan include the cleaning of all tram handrails and seats after every trip and a limit on passenger numbers, although families can travel together.

Peter Khan, the museum's long serving publicity officer - who, like all staff, is a volunteer - said the threatening weather kept numbers down.

"It was good we didn't get crowded out because we basically wanted to see how things would go with the requirements - a bit of time was spent working out everything that needed to be done," he said.

"The museum is only operating on a limited basis, but it gives a bit of a positive look to things, and we need positive things at the moment."

Mr Khan said two trams operated on the National Park Line on Sunday.

"Visitors spread out pretty well on the trams and in the museum."

During the last three months of the shutdown, volunteers kept busy on projects in the workshop and grounds, and some worked on equipment items at home.

One project, by Jim Allingham, was the restoration of a classic Sydney telephone box, which is on display in the museum,complete with original telephone equipment.

Volunteers also kept spirits up with regular updates on the museum's Facebook page.

One post read: "The Sydney Tramway Museum - currently only place in Australia where you can go from Melbourne to Sydney to Brisbane and not face a fine or two weeks in quarantine".

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