Thirty Stagecoach employees are celebrating after clocking up 811 years of service between them.

They were recognised at a long service awards ceremony at the Low Wood Bay Hotel, in Windermere, earlier this month.

They include bus drivers, instructors and trainers who have been working for Stagecoach Cumbria and North Lancashire for between 20 years and 45 years.

Managing director Rob Jones presented them with their awards at the event on Saturday March 6 in front of an audience of their colleagues.

He said: “I’d like to thank each and every one of our longstanding members of staff for their dedication to the job, from keeping the wheels turning to getting our passengers safely to their destinations each and every day.

“We are extremely fortunate to be able to count on so many years of industry experience across our company and take great pride in recognising and rewarding their long service.”

Terry Wright, a driver working out of the Barrow depot, who lives in Millom, received his award for 20 years’ service.

He said: “I love meeting the public. I always drive like I’m driving my family about, like I have got my grandkids on the bus.”

Bus driving instructor and trainer Frank Schofield is also based at the Barrow depot, and lives in the town. He received his 20 years long service award.

“I have been very fortunate because shortly after I started with Stagecoach, I got the job of driving instructor and it is total job satisfaction for me,” he said.

Eric Shaw, a bus driver based at the Kendal depot, received his award for 30 years’ service.

“Some days I go to Keswick with the double decker, or Coniston and Dungeon Ghyll with the narrow lanes and tight corners,” he said.

“I go over Kirkstone Pass which is good on a nice sunny day, and sometimes if there is a short stop at the top, I can let the passengers take some pictures. I like the challenges and the people I meet, and the fact it is a responsible job – it is a big responsibility keeping your passengers safe.”

Kendal’s depot inspector Dave Brodie received an award for 20 years service.

Dave, who lives in Kendal, said: “I love the job because of the fantastic bunch of people at this depot.

“We are more like a family. It’s not like other places I have worked before. There is a great camaraderie.”

Colin Read, a bus driver who works out of Penrith and lives in Carlisle, received his award for 30 years’ service.

“I enjoy my job,” he said.

“We do a run from Penrith to Windermere over Kirkstone Pass.

“You meet a lot of tourists who want to go around the Lakes and it’s quite a joy to get them on the bus. And you get to know a lot of regulars.

“There are 12 drivers at the Penrith depot and it’s like a family. Everyone helps each other out.”

Jimmy Croft, a relief inspector and trainer based at the Workington depot, received his award for 30 years’ service.

Jimmy, who lives at Salterbeck, helps to run the Workington depot as well as carrying out Certificate of Professional Competence training with drivers.

“I actually love my job,” said Jimmy.

“I started as a driver in Whitehaven when I was 21. I had always wanted to be a bus driver as a kid.

“My mum and dad never had a car, so we always went on the buses and the drivers were always friendly.

“It’s a dedicated team at Stagecoach and I’m proud to serve the public. We have many proud people at this depot.”