Published Tuesday 26 April 2016 at 11:29
Blackburn Bus Station will welcome its very first passengers on Sunday, May 1 when the state of the art transport hub opens its doors.
The first buses will arrive from 8am and passengers will be able to take advantage of real time bus information, a fully manned information desk, refreshment and toilet facilities.
Bus driver of 46 years Frank Atkinson who works for Transdev bus company will cut the ribbon to declare the bus station open.
And the first 100 visitors who arrive from 9.30am will receive a £2 voucher to spend at Blackburn market and a free tea or coffee and Danish pastry from Blakeys Express, the new retail pod operated by the popular King Georges Hall cafe.
The bus station is the cornerstone of the £40m Pennine Reach scheme, which has been funded by the Department for Transport and is being jointly delivered by Blackburn with Darwen Council and Lancashire County Council, the highway authority for Hyndburn.
The scheme aims to make it quicker and easier to travel by public transport and access work, leisure, shopping and education facilities from within and outside Blackburn with Darwen and Hyndburn.
The bus station which has 14 stands, will be staffed from the departure of the first bus in the morning until the last departure at night and customers will be able to purchase tickets for travel and get information on planning their journeys.
It is 10.5 metres wide, 90 metres long and enclosed in full height, frameless glazing which is supported by six sculptural loops inspired by the cotton weaving looms of Lancashire’s industrial heritage.
Harry Catherall, Chief Executive for Blackburn with Darwen Council, said: “Blackburn town centre has seen a multi-million pound regeneration in recent years and the bus station is at the centre of that.
“It will welcome visitors to Blackburn and send out the message that this is a place that is thinking wider, bigger and bolder in everything it does.”