Preston taxi company is running 90-day trial of circular route around Leyland

All aboard: Passengers, including councillor Matthew Tomlinson, on the new Avabus
All aboard: Passengers, including councillor Matthew Tomlinson, on the new Avabus

A PRESTON cab company has stepped into the breach to help a community that has lost its bus service.

City firm Avacab has been announced as the new provider of a bus route in Leyland that was lost when Fishwicks went out of business.

I hope it’ll be a huge success

The cab firm has bought a 30-seater bus and will be running a 90-day trial route of the Leyland Circular.

The bus will cover areas such as Worden Park, Runshaw College, Langdale Road, Golden Hill and School Lane, which were left without a bus service when historic bus company Fishwicks collapsed and Stagecoach took over a selection of their routes.

Kevin Yates, Avacab transport manager, said the call for the bus came out of the blue, but after some research the company decided to give it a trial.

He said: “Six months ago South Ribble councillor Jane Bell approached the company and asked if it was something we’d be able to do.

“We had calls from residents dotted about Leyland asking if it was something we’d look at.

“It’s a 40-minute service, a circular around Leyland from 6.30 in a morning until 7 at night, Monday to Saturday.

“It’s all funded through the Avacab group.

“We’re not trying to compete with anybody.

“It’s trial and error – if it’s not used, we won’t be able to continue.”

Pensioner Sandra Clayton, of Wrights Fold, Leyland, described the bus as a “godsend”.

Sandra, who organised a petition when the original service was lost, said: “I hope it does work because it’s a godsend.

“I’m just hoping this one takes off.”

Lancashire County councillor Matthew Tomlinson, who represents Leyland Central Division, said: “ It’s really important that people support this service as it’s currently a trial to test the market.

“Those responsible for getting it this far deserve every credit.

“I hope it’ll be a huge success.”