Schoolboy journey is two-hour farce

Jayne West, from Worsley Mesnes, whose son was thrown off the bus on his way to school in a dispute with the driver over change
Jayne West, from Worsley Mesnes, whose son was thrown off the bus on his way to school in a dispute with the driver over change

A WIGAN teen was twice turfed off a bus into the snowy darkness during a nightmare journey to school.

Nyall West, 13, was gamely battling to get to The Deanery High on Tuesday morning and avoid a black mark for being late despite the difficult travelling conditions when he fell foul of two different Stagecoach drivers insisting they were only abiding by the company’s rules.

Now his angry mum Jayne, of Gorman Walk, Worsley Mesnes, is demanding an apology from the transport giant.

She also wants the company to clarify its operating rules so that other parents can wave their youngsters off to catch a bus to a school during the pitch black morning with peace of mind.

Nyall’s nightmare began when he initially ran up the pavement to the Tyrer Avenue stop to catch the bus to school only to realise as he boarded, that he had forgotten to pick up his fare money from a table at home as he left.

He ran back home to collect the £10 note that he was to use for the £7 weekly ticket he was intending buying.

But was then left stunned and embarrassed when the driver of the next Stagecoach No 610 Wigan/Worsley Mesnes circular refused to let him board – because the driver didn’t have enough change for the tenner!

Upset Nyall went back home to await the next available No 610 service in the warm. But, flustered and in fear of detention for being late, his next attempt to get the bus to school also failed. Although the driver this time had enough change to allow him abroad, he had forgotten his under-16s IGO passenger pass, so again he was refused permission to buy a ticket to ride.

Nyall made another trip home to get the Transport for Greater Manchester pass and was then allowed onto the next No 610 without incident, finally arriving at school, fourth time lucky, at 9.47am. The two-mile ride had taken more than two hours to complete!

Jayne said: “He is always at the bus stop for 7.55am for the No 610 which goes from there and he is never late, he is as punctual as anything because The Deanery give detention if you are late.

“The first problem was Nyall’s fault because he put his hand into his pocket as he got onto the bus but then realised straight away he hadn’t picked up the money to buy the weekly saver ticket.

“But the second time he did nothing wrong at all. He got onto the bus and presented his £10 note for the £7 Saver but the driver turned around and said he hadn’t got any change, get off. Nyall is embarrassed and came all the way back home and by this point he is really upset about it because he knows he is going to be late for school and he can’t believe the driver has watched him running to catch the bus and then turfed him off again.

“I calmed him down, told him not to worry about it and sent him off to catch the next 610. By this time it was approaching 9am and he was flustered and realised that he had forgot his under-16s pass. Now bearing in mind he wears clothes size 10 or 11 years – he’s tiny – there is no way that he looks even approaching 16.

“That surely should have been OK when you think of the weather conditions. But the driver was having none of it and turfed him off again.

“I think bus drivers should be able to use their own discretion and the rules shouldn’t be set in stone because it was clear that Nyall wasn’t swinging the lead in any way.”

Managing director of Stagecoach Wigan Christopher Bowles said: “Following a complaint made by Mrs West concerning her son attempting to travel with Stagecoach Wigan on Tuesday January 22, we have launched a full investigation to determine the facts of the incident and are in contact with Mrs West regarding the matter.

“Stagecoach has a policy in place to ensure that vulnerable people are not left stranded at bus stops under any circumstances.

“However, until the results of this investigation are finalised we cannot comment further at this stage.”