Dannevirke's only taxi service could be parked up and those who rely on it stranded when operator Lawrence Popata returns to Australia.

Popata began running the Dannevirke Taxi Me service in conjunction with Wiremu Cooper in August last year.

Cooper had been operating the service since 2016, the first in the town since 2009 and the men split the hours between them.

However, Cooper is now suffering from ill-health and Popata and his wife are missing their family in Brisbane and have decided to return there.


"I was operating the taxi mainly in the evenings and people really appreciated being able to leave their car at home and rely on the taxi," Popata said.

"A lot of people are quite blown away when they realise we have a taxi service here, especially out-of-towners who are attending functions. I've been getting a lot of new clients, along with my regulars who are asking what are they going to do now?."

And while family was initially the main reason for selling their Dannevirke home and moving back to Australia, Popata, who has been working for Rangitane, has recently been headhunted by the organisation he worked for previously in Brisbane, delivering mental health services.

This means he will be leaving Dannevirke on November 24, earlier than he originally thought.

"This is going to be a bit of a loss for Dannevirke," Craig Boyden of For Homes For Farms said.

Boyden has used the taxi service and said if no one takes it over it will be a big loss for our town.

Popata said, although operating the service at night would sometimes be draining, everyone understood the hours he provided his service and people really appreciated it.

"I'd do everything from taking people out to the golf course for a wedding, to functions around town and just home safely from a night out," he said.

And there was no need for a meter, Popata and Cooper had a set price scale which people were told when they booked and it worked well.

If the business isn't sold before Popata leaves for Brisbane next week, the taxi will be left with Craig Boyden.

To operate the service you need a passenger license and have a police and medical clearance.