PUPILS who once relied on Halton Transport to attend school in Warrington have been left stranded following the bus company's collapse.

Halton Council confirmed the collapse on Friday lunchtime, with Warrington's Own Buses quickly stepping in to cover the number 20, 20a, 3d and the Warrington only journeys of the 62.

However, no provision has been made to enable children from Sandymoor and Moore to get to and from Bridgewater High school within the school operating hours.

One parent reported: "I am very grateful that Warrington's Own Buses have stepped in at such short notice.

"I am concerned however that some fundamental services that are essential to many young people have been lost in an instant.

"Many parents and pupils have been in a state of worry and panic over the weekend trying to determine a solution.

"For me personally, I work full time and am not able to drive to and from school at the required times.

"A few parents are trying to work in groups to try and manage this, taking on board existing personal commitments, managing different school start and finish times as well as their own jobs.

"I have therefore had to take short-notice leave to be able to get children to school.

"I cannot do this on a long term basis and need a solution before the end of the week.

"The only other option is an hour-long walk in the dark on an unlit road- therefore not an option."

The current services offered by Warrington's Own Buses do not provide a route through Newmoore Lane, Sandymoor and Moore for all those users attending Bridgewater High or needing to be in Warrington before 9am.

But, the service has taken over running of the bus services to Riverside and Cronton Colleges from Monday, with the college services running at the usual time and routes.

Private operator Arriva North West has also confirmed it will be picking up some of the routes from Halton Transport.

The news comes after the company recorded almost £620,000 in losses last year and had to be bailed out with a £750,000 loan from the council.

A spokesperson for Warrington’s Own Buses said: "We responded to the collapse of Halton Transport extremely quickly, as it was such short notice.

"We will work with the school to investigate this feedback, with a view to agreeing a solution that works for everybody.

"We have saved 26 jobs and restored important connections for those affected."