All of the benches at Kilmarnock bus station vanished yesterday.

Used by people waiting for buses in the town centre, the seats were mysteriously removed on Tuesday morning.

It has now emerged that Ayrshire Roads Alliance and Stagecoach decided to remove the benches to help stop the spread of coronavirus.

Officials believe the move will help the public maintain social distancing as passenger numbers start to rise again.

An East Ayrshire Council spokeswoman told the Kilmarnock Standard : "The Ayrshire Roads Alliance removed the seating within Kilmarnock bus station, in partnership with Stagecoach, to help ensure that social distancing is maintained once passenger numbers start to increase."

Part of the bus station still resembles a construction site after the contractor handed £420,000 to refurbish the depot went bust earlier this year.

The company, Project Management and Construction went into insolvency at the beginning of March.