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Business / John Leask & Son to cease trading in September

A FAMILIAR sight on Shetland’s roads will soon be no more after the owners of travel company John Leask & Son decided to cease trading at the end of September. 

A Shetland institution, buses with the Leasks of Lerwick slogan have been providing public transport in the isles since 1919.

John Leask & Son will cease trading at the end of September.

The company also operated a busy travel agents office at the Esplanade, in Lerwick, until the end of 2011 when they gave up against the ever-growing competition from online booking opportunities.

Since then the company has been operating from its depot at Gremista focusing on bus services and coach tours.

Managing director Peter Leask, the grandson of company founder John Leask, said on Thursday that the decision to wind down the business and to retire at the end of the season had been made the previous day.

“All the local authority contracts come to an end in August, and once the tourist season is over, if there is a tourist season,“ he said.

The closure of the company will affect around 30 staff but Leask said he was confident that most of his employees would be able to move on to similar jobs.

“We will be working on that from now on, there is always a shortage of bus drivers in Shetland, so I don’t think that side of things will be too much of a problem.”