Girl ‘ordered off bus’ in Norwich as she was a penny short of junior fare

A bus. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

A bus. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: © ARCHANT NORFOLK PHOTOGRAPHIC

A bus company is investigating claims that a young girl was ordered off a service a mile before her stop for the sake of a penny.

Milly Barton, 17, studies at Paston College in North Walsham and uses the bus from Norwich railway station to her home in Thorpe St Andrew most days.

She uses the 24 service, operated by First Eastern Counties.

Her mother Amy Barton said she makes sure her daughter has the correct money for the bus each morning.

Milly caught her usual bus at 5pm on Monday from the station and asked for her junior ticket.

'The driver asked for an extra 10p on top of her usual fare,' said Mrs Barton. 'She asked if the price had increased, and he said that the price increased the day before.'

She searched her bag for the extra cash, but was a penny short of the increased fare.

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'Milly asked if he could please accept the fare so she could get home, and he would only offer to take her as far as the Heartsease pub, which is well over a mile from where we live,' said Mrs Barton. 'I'm really angry with the bus company.

'It's really unacceptable for them to make a young girl walk after dark like that, for the sake of a penny.'

She added that she felt the situation showed 'poor judgement' on the part of the driver.

Hugo Forster, general manager for First Eastern Counties, said: 'It is disappointing when we hear of a situation such as this, but with the details provided to us, I can assure Mrs Barton that we will undertake a full investigation into the circumstances.

'I would like to apologise for any undue inconvenience caused by the incident.'