Tragic death of Colne bus driver (57)

PROUD AND DECENT: Robin Anderson (36) spending time in the Lake District, where he used to love to visit (s)
PROUD AND DECENT: Robin Anderson (36) spending time in the Lake District, where he used to love to visit (s)

FRIENDS, family and colleagues have united to pay their respects to a former Colne bus driver who died after a four month battle with esophageal cancer, aged just 57.

Robin Anderson, well-known in the Pendle area for his time spent driving the X43 service from Pennine Lancashire to Manchester, had suffered with kidney failure for five years, but sadly died at his home in Glen Street after cancer spread throughout his body.

Funeral of Colne bus driver Robin Anderson (57) at St Bartholomew's Church in Colne.'Photo Ben Parsons

Funeral of Colne bus driver Robin Anderson (57) at St Bartholomew's Church in Colne.'Photo Ben Parsons

On Friday, his family and friends gathered together at St Bartholomew’s Church to celebrate his life, and remember the “proud and decent” man, who was dedicated to his job and to helping other people.

Guests were transported to the service on an X43 bus, after Burnley and Pendle Transdev agreed to one being used instead of a funeral car. Robin’s friend, Steve Fenwick, drove the bus to the church.

Wythenshawe-born Robin, who had a passion for visiting the Lake District, leaves behind his wife Ann (55), four children, Robin Anthony (36), Paul (34), Tracy (32) and Ann-Marie (30), 10 grandchildren, and two Westies, Winny and Wilson.

Another granddaughter, who is to be named Lexie Robyn after their granddad, is due in December. His first granddaughter, Emily, who Robyn, a fan of DIY and tidying, saw being born, turned 15 on Sunday.

Paying tribute to her husband, Ann, who has been Robin’s carer since he got diagnosed with kidney failure, said: “Robin was a proud and decent man.

“He never moaned or complained, and he was always helping people whenever he could.

“I just feel empty inside. We are taking one day at a time — it is all we can do.”

And Ann-Marie added: “People said he was the nicest man they had ever met.”

Tracy came up with the idea of getting to her dad’s funeral via the X43 bus, and with the help of staff, including Harry Brady, from Burnley and Pendle Transdev, she managed to get her wish turned into a reality.

She said: “Dad never made a fuss, so we wanted to while we can.

“The bus company told us that nothing is impossible. Dad would have been so proud.

“He was absolutely brilliant, and has always done what a proper dad should.”

A spokesman from Burnley and Pendle Transdev said: “Robin was a very loyal and excellent employee, who worked for us for over 20 years.

“We were very pleased indeed that we could do something to pay back all the hard work that he had done for us over the years.”

The family would also like to thank Macmillan Cancer Support and Burnley General Hospital’s renal unit for their help, while Robin was ill.

Anybody wanting to make a donation to Macmillan Cancer Support in Robin’s memory can do so by visiting Helliwells Funeral Service, in Burnley Road, Colne.