Plans to transform double-decker bus into canal-side cafe in Heath Charnock

Adam Pope and Lucien Burkhardt at the boatyard pictured with dog Rosie. They are hoping to convert a double-decker bus into a cafe by the canal
Adam Pope and Lucien Burkhardt at the boatyard pictured with dog Rosie. They are hoping to convert a double-decker bus into a cafe by the canal
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A double-decker bus could be transformed into a canal-side cafe if plans are given the thumbs up.

The vision for the cream and red bus is the brain child of Lucien Burkhardt and Adam Pope, who also run canal tours with Ellerbeck Narrowboats.

If the application, which is with town planners at Chorley Council, is successful the converted double-decker cafe will have pride of place at The Boatyard off Rawlinson Lane in Heath Charnock.

“We hope to call it The Boatyard Bus Cafe,” said Lucien.

“We have got a boatyard with three boats out on the canal and we just thought, ‘well lets open a cafe on site.

“We have narrowboats which we hire out to people and there’s a lot of footfall here to justify a cafe. There’s nothing similar in the area.

“It would be a bit of an all in one set up. We are in the early stages and we have been in contact with the hygiene people.

“We’re just waiting for planning permission now.

“The bus is originally a Leyland Olympian. It went down to London then it came back to East Yorkshire and Accrington.

“Then the EU said it couldn’t be used anymore because of the step and it went into private hands.

“Someone in Essex converted it into a cafe and I bought it on eBay.

“We drove it back up and we have stripped it out and started again.”

The idea of the conversion came, in part because of members of Lucien’s family who also own a double-decker bus which they have transformed into a cafe.

He said: “We’ve got family down in Somerset who have a little bus and its thriving, it’s brilliant.

“We’ve got the space and with what we have down here it would fit very well.

“The idea is that downstairs we are going to have a single door. Half the bus will be a kitchen with a couple of seats for serving food.

“Upstairs there will be a breakfast bar around the front windows and six tables with four seats at each.

“They are the original bus seats and there’s enough room for 28 people at a time.“

Lucien told the Guardian that the food would be made by an outside catering company and sandwiches, cakes, paninis and drinks would be on offer.

“It will be quality over quantity,” he said. “The idea is that we can provide lunch for people to take with them.”

To view the planning application search 18/00317/FUL at planning.chorley.gov.uk

A decision is expected on the application by Wednesday, May 23.