AN East Lancashire bus station is to get an accessibility upgrade.

The work at Nelson bus station will make it easier for people to get on and off a new style of vehicle increasingly used on rural bus routes.

Work is planned to take place next year to raise the height of the kerbs, and realign the bus bays, to better accommodate the 22-seater vehicles which operate routes such as the 66/67 Ribble Country Service introduced by the county council last year and operated by Transdev.

While smaller than conventional buses, the 'sprinter' vehicles have a longer bonnet, with improvements to the bus station being needed to ensure these buses can park properly and allow safe access on and off the buses for people who may have reduced mobility, and anyone with a pram.

Lancashire County Council's cabinet has given approval for contractors to be invited to bid to carry out the improvements.

Cllr Charlie Edwards, the authority's highways and transport boss, said: "Buses really are a lifeline for people in rural areas.

"In recognition of this we have invested a further £750,000 over the past year to make Lancashire's rural services more frequent, reliable and convenient to use.

"Many of these services utilise the smaller 'sprinter' vehicles which are better suited to negotiating country lanes, and accommodating smaller numbers of passengers helping to ensure services remain efficient and sustainable.

"This type of service has become more widespread since Nelson Bus Station opened, with these improvements being needed to ensure good access to and from the vehicles."