Lakeside Coaches takes on NCB Motors of Wem

NCB Motors of Wem, Shropshire, has been taken over by Lakeside Coaches of Ellesmere.

The operator officially took over the company on 1 March 2019. Of NCB’s 15-strong fleet, Lakeside has taken the operator’s eight newest vehicles: a Volvo B9R-based Plaxton Panther, three Volvo B9Rs with Jonckheere bodywork and four Volvo B12-based Jonckheeres. The remaining vehicles in its fleet are to be auctioned by Barbers Auctions LLP of Market Drayton. The auction takes place at NCB’s depot on 6 April.

NCB Motors Director, Paul Brown, is to stay on at the Wem site and act as the facility’s Operations Manager. Paul’s brother and fellow Director, Derek, is retiring. The rest of the drivers have passed onto Lakeside under TUPE arrangements, with approximately 15 staff taken on. All contracts and private hire work have been retained by the new owners.

Lakeside is to rent the depot from Paul and run services from it. The new owners are part of the Earned Recognition scheme and the plan is to bring the investments it has made to achieve this to NCB Motors.

On why he is selling on the business, Paul said none of his own or Derek’s children are interested in taking on the business. On why he is selling to Lakeside, he said: “It’s just because we got on well with them.”

Gareth Davies, Lakeside Coaches Director, said: “It’s going to be very much business as usual. But we have merged into one operation. I think probably with time the vehicles will be painted into Lakeside colours.

“We have had a positive, long working relationship in the past. They are a good fit for us. Geographically it makes sense. They are 11 miles away, which makes them close enough to control resources between sites. It takes us to 80 staff in total and puts us at approximately 55 vehicles.

“NCB Motors is obviously a well-established company. It’s been well led by Paul. There’s basically not a lot that needs changing.”

NCB Motors went into coaching in 1966 and was formed by Norman Cyril Brown, Paul’s grandfather.

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