THERE was a big welcome from passengers on Monday when the 319 returned to service on the Goostrey via Holmes Chapel to Sandbach route.

Alan McLeod, the regular driver of the rural rider, which also doubles as the 316 Cookesmere Lane circular, Sandbach, felt very relaxed behind the wheel.

Alan has been furloughed for three months and looked forward to getting back to work on the route for D&G buses.

"It really is great to be back," he said.

Knutsford Guardian:

The bus picking up at the Red Lion in Goostrey

The first buses of the day were only lightly loaded with the 10.45am from Goostrey, with only three happily returning passengers from the village and one from Holmes Chapel.

But it is expected to get back to normal as more of the regular elderly and pensioner passengers decide to leave home for shopping trips in the coming weeks.

The service was withdrawn when the coronavirus lockdown was ordered by the Government.

Now it is operating to the normal timetable on five days a week, but passengers would like the return of the Saturday service lost several years ago resulting from cuts in local bus routes

Knutsford Guardian:

A notice reassuring passengers the vehicle is coronavirus cleansed