The project will trial a fleet of grocery delivery robots operating from three local Co-op stores across the borough.

Up to 45,000 residents will be able to receive groceries to their doorsteps via a fleet of autonomous robots.

The robots are powered by zero carbon electricity and use a combination of sensors, artificial intelligence and machine learning to travel on pavements and navigate around any obstacles.

Mayor of Bedford, Dave Hodgson, said: 'I’m delighted that the council and Starship are working together with Co-op for innovative solutions to grocery delivery - it is exciting to see the robots on our streets. It has the potential to make life easier for thousands of residents across Bedford and Kempston while also reducing congestion.

'Hopefully the trial will be a success which would allow us to extend the benefits of quick and easy deliveries to more people across the Borough.'

Starship was created by the co-founders of Skype in 2014, and have been successfully trialled in communities across Milton Keynes, Northampton and Cambridgeshire.