VETERAN coach driver David Field has bussed his last party of pensioners to the seaside.

For David, who turns 80 next June, has surrendered his licence after spending his entire working life on the buses.

The jovial pensioner has worked for Royton coach company Healings for the last six years, but before that he drove for Swans at Chadderton for 11 years and drove Oldham corporation vehicles for 27 years.

Great grandfather David would regularly drive coaches on trips to Blackpool and Cleveleys but finally decided to retire even though he is in fine health.

Once a year the David, of Old Kiln Lane, Grotton, would volunteer to drive for the organisation A Busman's Holiday free of charge.

"I decided not a reapply for my licence," said David. "You have to have a medical every year which costs £500, and although I'm OK, I decided it was time to call it a day."

But he will miss his trips to the seaside.

Widower David, who lost his wife Kathleen two years ago, said: "Driving a coach is a fantastic job. You meet all sorts of interesting people and see lots of nice places."

David Chew, office manager at Healings, told The Oldham Times: "We have had an association with David for the last six years during which time he has devoted some of his spare time as a pensioner to help us out during busy periods, in a way we helped him to 'keep his eye in' driving full sized coaches.

"If we told him the customers' destination was Blackpool then his face would light up as this was probably his favourite place to go (a bit of nostalgia perhaps as many hours of family time would have been spent there in the 50s and 60s).

"Whatever work was put David’s way he would do it without any complaint from him and not many people are like that these days.

"Everyone here has enjoyed the time they have spent with him and how nice it would have been if fate would had brought us together much earlier, rather than years after when most people retire.

"We thoroughly expect David to call in on a fairly regular basis to have a cuppa and a chat and we all wish him a happy retirement."