LLANDEILO coach firm Jones International was among 40 coach operators from west Wales who took to the roads to support a call for help for coach operators during the coronavirus pandemic.

Starting at Carmarthen’s park & ride car park, the convoy drove around Carmarthen, down to Haverfordwest and up to Cardigan.

The convoy was part of the national ‘Honk for Hope’ demonstration, which aims to draw attention to the plight of the coach travel industry.

The Confederation of Passenger Transport UK, which represents 1,000 bus and coach operators, says that more than 40,000 jobs are currently under threat.

Nationally, organisers say that the ‘Honk For Hope’ is a peaceful demonstration designed solely to gain awareness and hopefully, make the government sit up, listen and help.

Neil Jones, managing director for Jones International said: "Coronavirus has devastated our line of work. At Jones International we are very fortunate to have such fantastic customers who have supported us throughout this pandemic by re-booking, taking credit notes and booking from the end of this year and throughout 2021.

"The large majority of coach companies are family owned and operated and they do it because it is in their blood - and definitely not for the money."

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He added: "Much of the running costs are not being funded by the government and as you can imagine, is putting an incredible strain on families that are usually happy to work all hours to pay the bills.

"All these operators want to do is go back to work."

Stuart Hewens of Laugharne Travel, a member of the Confederation of Passenger Transport, said: “It’s gone very well, lots of public awareness and support, which is what we were aiming for.”