Lincoln's open-top bus in demand for out-of-hours use
Girl guides, rotary clubs and teenagers heading to their school prom all want to arrive in style on Lincoln's open-top bus.
The city's Visitor Information Centre says it is being inundated with requests for use of the bus out of hours.
It comes after Lincoln Business Improvement Group teamed up with Stagecoach and the Visit Lincoln Partnership to bring back open top bus tours for the first time since 2004.
Michele Sims, visitor information manager at the centre, said: "We've been getting requests from all kinds of clubs and societies.
"We've had rotary clubs from across the county interested, girl guide groups and the Lincoln Minster Round Table.
"We even had one enquiry to see if it could be hired out to take some students to their school prom.
"We'll consider any booking for the bus as long as it's outside of operational hours and that there's a driver available.
"We can tailor a booking to whatever the group needs."
The bus launched on April 6 but weeks of inclement weather followed.
Now, with the bumper bank holiday and the glimmer of summer sunshine, more and more passengers are boarding the bus.
It's currently a weekend fixture, with daily tours taking in Lincoln Cathedral, The Lawn and Lincoln Castle, beginning on July 1. From September 2 the daily service will be cut back to weekends only, until the end of October.
The chief executive of Lincoln BIG, Matt Corrigan, said it was too soon to tell whether the service would return next year.
"We've certainly seen a pick up in passengers as the weather has warmed up and the long bank holiday for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee has helped to bring more tourists into the city," he said.
"It's not weather-dependent for everyone and we do have umbrellas and ponchos available but we've certainly had more people as it's been sunnier.
"It really is too early to tell if we'll be bringing the service back next year but so far we're pleased with the uptake and the way it's working.
"It will be the core summer period after it's turned to a daily service which really decides it for us."
Passengers can buy tickets from the Visitor Information Centre, in Castle Square and online at www.visitlincoln.com
Prices for the tours are £10 for adults and £4 for children. There are also family tickets priced at £25 and £50.
To hire the bus out of hours costs £125 plus VAT.
For more information or to book the bus, call the Visitor Information Centre on 01522 545458 and ask for Ms Sims.