EAST Lancashire trans-port firm Fraser Eagle is set to open its own second hand car business.

The Padiham-based company, which specialises in transport services including coach contracts and replacement bus services for rail companies, will open the new business in Accrington on January 2.

Fraser Eagle has expanded a number of times in recent years, including becoming the main shareholder in a train operator, and starting an interior design and contract furniture company.

Now the company has 180 staff in Padiham and a further 180 nationwide, and the new car dealership will also include a servicing and repairs centre.

Kevin Dean, group managing director of Fraser Eagle, said: "This is an excellent new venture for Fraser Eagle Group and strengthens our portfolio of business to consumer products.

"We are especially delighted to increase our presence in Accrington, the town were Fraser Eagle has its historical routes."

The business, which will be known as Fraser Eagle Cars, is the culmination of a 20-year relationship between Fraser Eagle and car suppliers Keith Middleton and Duncan Spencer, formerly of Stratstone Volvo, Accrington.

Fraser Eagle Cars will be based at the former Perry's Peugeot garage in Milnshaw Lane, Accrington, which has under-gone extensive refurbishment.

The new team will also include service and repairs manager Steve Waddington, also a former Stratstone Volvo employee with 30 years' experience of car servicing and repairs.