The owner of a comedy club has said he fears for the future of his business if Preston Bus Station is demolished.
Dave Perkin, the man behind the Frog and Bucket Comedy Club in Lord’s Walk, Preston, said plans to build a new bus station and car park further away from his site could ‘isolate’ the venue.
The popular attraction only opened three years ago, and has since undergone an expansion to cater for bigger crowds.
But following a presentation about the future of the bus station, given by Preston Council leader Peter Rankin to the city’s Business Improvement District (BID) representatives on Tuesday, January 8, Mr Perkin raised his concerns.
Labour-led Preston Council agreed in December to press ahead with plans to demolish the bus station, because it said it could no longer afford £300,000-a-year running costs or find enough cash to carry out repairs or refurbishment.
Mr Perkin said: “According to the drawings we’ve seen Lord’s Walk will completely disappear.
“Looking at the plans there is no taxi access, no ambulance or fire brigade or delivery access.
“Our major concern is we’re going to be completely isolated in that area.
“The drawings we’ve seen completely cut us off.”
However, Coun Rankin and Mick Lovatt, the council’s director of environment, said vehicle access for businesses in Lord’s Walk had been considered in the proposals.
Coun Rankin said: “We really do value your enterprise and we would want to do all we can to ensure it stays.
“One of the options did look at a new bus station towards that end of the site.
“I think that’s not a goer and we would want a new bus station towards the north of the site near the hotel, rather than in your direction.”
Speaking after the meeting, Mr Perkin said he wasn’t opposed to a new bus station and car park being built, but concerned about the practical consequences.
He said: “After the meeting I talked with one of the councillors and they said they would look at the details.
“Peter Rankin said straight away we’re really pleased the club is in Preston and don’t want to damage your business.
“He said he would arrange another meeting looking at the plans in more detail.
“Preston needs to modernise and move forward and we’re supportive of things around us, but our concerns are access during the demolition and once it’s all done.
“I presume the bridge which provides access to the multi-storey car park will have to come down.
“I presume it’s not just us – other businesses will have questions about access.”