Brothers left standing by driver as no room on coach

Jack Scott (11) was left outside the school with three other students by a  Cropley coach driver.
Jack Scott (11) was left outside the school with three other students by a Cropley coach driver.

A Spalding mum was furious when a coach driver left her two sons standing outside the school gates.

Ben Scott (15) and his brother, Jack (11) were supposed to have caught the Cropley’s coach home from the Thomas Cowley High School in Donington on Friday night.

But Ben was asked by the driver to get off the coach and he and his brother were left behind on the roadside with two other students.

Mum Sally said: “There were teachers with them, but what made me cross was the driver didn’t call the depot to say he had had to leave four students because there was no room on the bus.

“Ben said the driver told him ‘you can get off because you were not on the bus in the morning’ – I think he stood out because he has red hair, but I don’t know.

“The boys said the coach was smaller than normal, but in any case Cropley’s should have sent another one out for them.

“When Ben told me what had happened I called Cropley Coaches and they knew nothing about it, but said they would send a coach out for them.

“In the end the boys were collected in a 4x4 by, I think, Mr Cropley. He didn’t take them to the door, though – just dropped them off at the bottom of the road. At least they were not charged for the trip.”

Bus fares for students travelling from outside the school’s catchment also caused an upset for parents when the firm started charging £5 in the morning for a return trip, even if a pupil didn’t want to use the coach each way.

However, Mrs Scott said this was changed to £2.50 each way when parents complained to Lincolnshire County Council, which oversees school transport.

Anita Ruffle, transport manager at the council, said: “This has been an isolated report of over-demand at a point along the bus route.

“Drivers may not exceed the maximum loading capacity stipulated for their vehicle and unfortunately on occasions this may mean intending passengers are turned away.

“At the school, drivers will usually prioritise passenger loading to allow season ticket and return ticket holders to board before those wishing to pay a single fare.

“The county council is liaising with the operator and will continue to monitor loadings and demand for the service.”