SHOPPERS left stranded by a supermarket's decision to cancel their bus may have been handed a life-line by a local bus company.

The Oxford Bus Company has urged those let-down by Tesco Cowley to use their PickMeUp service instead.

A bus which used to run between Blackbird Leys, Littlemore and the branch of the superstore was stopped recently with Tesco blaming it being under-used.

It meant that the people, many of whom are elderly, who have been using the bus for decades are no longer able to complete their weekly shop.

Phil Southall, managing director of the Oxford Bus Company, said pensioners could use their bus for free at valid times.

He added: “Concessionary pass holders can travel for free on our award-winning PickMeUp service between Blackbird Leys and Tesco Cowley seven days a week.

“All they have to do is register their concessionary pass in the app and they can make the journey they want to within the PickMeUp zone for free at the times their pass is valid for.”

“Journeys between Blackbird Leys and Tesco Cowley have already proved to be popular on our PickMeUp service.”

Dubbed the 'Uber for busses' PickMeUp was the county’s first transport service of its kind when it was introduced last June.

It enables passengers to request a minibus pick-up within 15 minutes at selected stops using a mobile phone app.

The service expanded last month with more vehicles added to the fleet.

In April it began offering the on-demand ride-sharing service began in Summertown and Jericho as well after the initial success in East Oxford.

Passengers had previously said that the regular Thursday morning bus to the shop was an opportunity to socialise as well as an easy way of getting around.

Tesco has apologised for the inconvenience caused by its decision to cancel the service.