PLANS for a new sightseeing bus around Cumbrae have been thrown into doubt due to the rising cost of fuel.

The service was due to launch last week to take passengers anti-clockwise around the island, with a stop at Fintry Bay.

Millport Motors, who operate the regular shuttle between the ferry and the town, had said it would run during school holidays and on busy weekends between June and August.

However Iain Morrison, owner, says the rising cost of fuel means the new venture may not happen.

He said: “We have delayed the around the island service because we are unable to find a suitable vehicle, plus we’re now over £2 per litre for us to operate.

“Hopefully it will improve soon and the service may still appear this summer, but at this rate horses and carts may be more suitable.

“We are actually looking at an old 1964 double decker as a novelty thing, and hopefully that will all come together.

“We are looking to see if it is feasible to go round the island’s roads too as some repairs may be needed."

Previously, Iain had said the bus would allow residents and visitors access to a side of the island that is less appreciated.

He said: “Services are planned to depart from the pier hourly from 11.40am until 4.40pm, meeting the ferry on the hour at the Cumbrae Slip.”

“We will have six tours a day around the island, so that people can get on coming off the ferry and take the longer way round.

“It will allow people who usually can’t to see the other side of the island, like the elderly or the infirm.”