ELDERLY shoppers have been left stranded after their weekly trip to Tesco was cancelled by the supermarket giant.

The Thursday morning free bus between Littlemore and Blackbird Leys to the Cowley superstore, a service which has been run for decades, will no longer operate with the shop blaming it being 'under-used.'

Regular passengers have pledged to protest the plans and say that as well as providing much-needed transportation, the bus gave them a chance to meet up and socialise.

Ann Caffyn, 82, has been getting the bus every week for as long as she can remember.

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She said: "It's been quite a number of years.

"Previously it went to the Abingdon Tesco before the Cowley one opened about 13 years ago.

"Once it dropped us off, it went on to Wootton (near Abingdon) and brought people in from there.

"This has left me a bit stuck. I don't have any other transport and it is too far for me to walk nowadays.

"A taxi would cost at least £5 there and back. I'm not sure what I'm going to do now."


Another passenger, Georgina Chamberlayne, 75, said she would now have to rely on lifts from her son or walking down a cycle track to reach the shop.

She said: "I've only been getting the bus for about a year but some have been on it for decades.

"We think it's been running more than 30 years overall.

"Everyone is really upset. They all know each other from the bus and it's a chance to meet up weekly and catch up on what's going on.

"Most weeks we would do our shops and then stop and have a coffee. I feel really sorry it's gone.

"For myself, it's not so bad as I can still walk down but it can get cold and dark, particularly in winter.

"Most weeks there would be at least 12-15 people on board."

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A Tesco spokesperson confirmed the cancellation, saying it was a 'difficult decision'.

He added: "Unfortunately the service is under-used and makes a loss.

"Our priority has been to ensure our customers who use the bus are aware of our decision and of all alternative routes in the area so that they are able to plan their journeys.

"We are sorry for any inconvenience this causes.”