BUS company Stagecoach have apologised for inconvenience caused after a Forest mum told a ’ridiculous’ situation that saw school pupils and college students struggling to get on board a morning bus.
The operator admits there was ’a mistake’ in the scheduling of services which saw only a single decker bus appear on a stop for a normal service, rather than dedicated school transport, near the Queensway estate in Broadwell at 8am a fortnight ago.
The pupils were heading for Lakers School at Five Acres and the students were going to the Gloucestershire College campus in Cinderford.
Mrs Charlotte Davies said: “They sent a single decker bus past the Queensway estate in Broadwell at 8am to pick up schoolchildren and students going to Lakers and the college in Cinderford through Coalway and Mile End.
“It’s full when its a double decker, let alone a single. Recently, a girl was left at the roadside because there was no room on the double decker.
“Now, they’ve sent a single decker, which is just ridiculous.
“My son Jack, 16, who is studying cyber security at Cinderford couldn’t get on. It’s supposed to stop at the school and college, so it’s children you are talking about.
“And if he can’t get on in Broadwell, there are other kids further along who won’t be able to get on.
“The driver just drives past because it’s full and they can’t get them on. And it’s unsafe as it is. They are squashed in like sardines.
“One morning, the driver let on three children, but said there was no space for the other five, including my son.
“I tried to contact Stagecoach, and all they said was they would forward my feedback. I’ve heard nothing since.
“We’re not asking for much. My son just wants to get to college, but you even the double deckers are jammed, they are having to stand, let alone the singles. Kids are just being left at the roadside. It’s ridiculous.
“My son came home saying he hadn’t been able to get on the bus and luckily I was able to mamage to give him a lift.”
Stagecoach revised their service timetables at the beginning of February but there have been a problems, highlighted by Berry Hill district council member Tim Gwilliam and Gloucestershire County Council vice chairman Cllr Alan Preest, around the Berry Hill and Five Acres areas.
Stagecoach issued a statement regarding the problems highlighted by Mrs Davies, saying: “We apologise for the inconvenience caused by what we understand to be a mistake in the scheduling during the week of 23rd September.
“We are investigating the circumstances but, in the meantime, we have put steps in place to ensure that a double decker bus operates on this route during term time.”