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Banned bus company placed into liquidation owing more than £300,000

NOTE: This content is old - Published: Thursday, Jul 18th, 2019.

A bus company that was banned from transporting passengers after a wheel fell off one of its vehicles has been placed into liquidation.

Back in March, the Traffic Commissioner for Wales published a damning report into The Skiers Lodge Ltd, now known as Transervis, which ran four routes in Wrexham under the name of easyCoach.

The firm had its transport licence revoked after a series of safety concerns were highlighted, including an incident where a wheel came off one of its buses on the A483.

Nick Jones also disqualified its sole director Andrew Martin from holding a licence for two years after accusing him of ‘arrogance’.

Transervis has now been placed into liquidation as documents published on the Companies House website show it owes more than £300,000.

When approached for comment, Mr Martin claimed the move was part of a ‘restructuring’ of his businesses.

He also offered reassurances about the future of an information desk in Wrexham Bus Station which is run by another of his firms, despite it being the subject of a striking off order.

He said: “The liquidation of Transervis Ltd. is part of an overall restructuring of group companies that we are presently undertaking.

“We are continuing to work closely with Wrexham Council through this period, and the Wrexham Bus Station Information Office remains open and the staff continue to provide a service to the travelling public using the bus station”.

The amounts owed by Transervis include £53,000 to HMRC, £34,000 to Barclays Bank and £20,000 to employees, as well as a director’s loan of £43,000 from Mr Martin himself.

Meanwhile, records show another of his companies, TSL Wales, is also at risk of being dissolved.

It was awarded a three-year contract to oversee the bus station information centre by Wrexham Council in 2018, but according to Companies House has yet to file its annual confirmation statement.

Following the Traffic Commissioner’s verdict, concerns were previously raised about the firm’s suitability to continue assisting commuters in Wrexham.

In response to the striking off action against TSL, Mr Martin said accountants have recently filed the overdue document, adding he expected the notice to be rescinded.

He said: “The striking off order for TSL Wales is an automatic administrative filing by Companies House themselves, due to our accountants being late in filing the confirmation statement.

“The confirmation statement has now been filed and you will shortly see the strike off being removed or rescinded.

“The long term future of the bus station information office is assured.”

However, Wrexham Council said it was “considering its position” in light of the latest developments.

A spokesperson said: “Wrexham Council confirms it is aware of the situation and is currently considering its position.

“At the moment the information desk at the bus station remains open.”

EasyCoach launched its services in Wrexham in June 2018 by opening a depot in the village of Rhosymedre, which it painted orange in keeping with easyGroup’s branding.

At the time it promised cheaper fares for customers, but withdrew from providing services after only two months.

By Liam Randall – BBC Local Democracy Reporter (more here on the LDR scheme).

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