Counting the cost of bus coin kerfuffle!

Denise Wilkie, of Cherry Tree Gardens in Marton, was ordered off a bus when she presented a Jersey 50p coin as part of her fare.
Denise with the coin.  PIC BY ROB LOCK
4-2-2017
Denise Wilkie, of Cherry Tree Gardens in Marton, was ordered off a bus when she presented a Jersey 50p coin as part of her fare. Denise with the coin. PIC BY ROB LOCK 4-2-2017
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Do you have one of these unusual 50p coins in your pocket or purse?

If so, you might want to think twice about using one to pay your bus fare.

Denise Wilkie, of Cherry Tree Gardens in Marton, was ordered off a bus when she presented a Jersey 50p coin as part of her fare.
The coin.  PIC BY ROB LOCK
4-2-2017

Denise Wilkie, of Cherry Tree Gardens in Marton, was ordered off a bus when she presented a Jersey 50p coin as part of her fare. The coin. PIC BY ROB LOCK 4-2-2017

That’s what Denise Wilkie learned when she was not allowed to get on her bus to work after handing the driver a Jersey 50p coin.

The 54-year-old said: “It was about 7am and I was on my way to work.

“I gave the bus driver the money and he handed it back and said I couldn’t use it.

“I explained that I had no other change and that I had taken it from my husband’s change jar.

“I asked him if he wanted me to leave and he said ‘yes’.

“It was not a good situation at all and I felt very embarrassed.

“People on the bus were all watching me.

“Imagine being ordered off the bus at 7am in the freezing cold and dark.”

Jersey 50p coins are legal currency in the UK, but are not legal tender, and while they can be used in day-to-day transactions, the person or business being paid can refuse to accept them.

Legal tender is defined as money that must be accepted if offered in payment of a debt.

Coins produced in Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man are only legal tender in those places. Despite this, most shops will accept them as they are the same weight, colour and shape as normal 50p coins.

Mum-of-six Denise, who lives at Cherry Tree Gardens and works at the Harbour Unit on Preston New Road, said: “I thought it was just a normal 50p.

“I understand it is at the discretion of the business when they accept it or not, which I think is ridiculous.

“I think they should have accepted it.” Denise trekked to the nearby Asda Superstore on Cherry Tree Road to get the change she needed to pay for her ride to work.

She said: “Luckily for me my husband was working at the shop and he drove me to work.

“It was totally a coincidence that he was there doing some repair work. If he hadn’t been there I would have missed the next bus and I would have been late for work.

“We don’t even know where the 50p came from. It must have been given to us in change. We definitely haven’t gone to Jersey!”

A Blackpool Transport spokesman said: “We appreciate it can be awkward for some people but as it’s not legal tender we do not accept Jersey 50p coins.”