Bus firm says sorry after child fare gaffe

Toni Timmermans from Layton at the bus stop where her daughter was refused entry to a Blackpool Transport service.
Toni Timmermans from Layton at the bus stop where her daughter was refused entry to a Blackpool Transport service.
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A CONCERNED mother has blasted a bus driver who refused to let her teenage daughter on a late night bus because she did not have the correct fare.

Toni Timmermans, 35, says her 15-year-old daughter Mia was left “shaken up” after she was denied access to the service from Cleveleys to Layton while on her way home from visiting a friend.

Blackpool Transport, which runs the service, has since admitted the driver was wrong to refuse Mia entry on to the bus, saying it was a breach of company policy.

Toni, of Wayman Road, Layton, contacted The Gazette to raise awareness among parents so vulnerable youngsters would not end up being put in a similar position.

She said: “It’s annoyed me because Blackpool Transport shouldn’t be doing something like this.

“What would have happened if something had happened to her?

“It would’ve been on the bus driver’s back.”

The issue began when Mia tried to pay the usual half fare for people her age.

But unbeknownst to her, Blackpool Transport had changed its pricing policy meaning all passengers must pay a full fare after 9pm.

Mia admitted she had been left “scared” in an area she did not know well after the bus drove off.

She said: “I thought it was out of order, I didn’t have a lot of money on me.

“There could be children younger than me put in a similar position and if they don’t have the fare they could get attacked or anything.”

Blackpool Transport’s current policy is not to accept half fares after 9pm, a measure which bosses said had been in effect for the past six months.

However people who have purchased a child’s day ticket or weekly ticket can redeem them after this time.

Bob Mason, director of delivery for Blackpool Transport, says the driver should have let Mia on the bus and the company will be investigating.

He said: “The driver should have taken what cash she had and have issued her with a ticket to pay the remainder of the money afterwards.

“We will most certainly be investigating this, it’s a breach of company policy.”

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