A 16-year-old girl badly injured when a double-decker school bus crashed into a railway bridge has told how she has suffered “dark days”, had run away from home and even tried to take her own life.

The teenager was one of three victims listed in charges against bus driver Martin Walker, who has been jailed for three years.

Walker admitted three charges of causing injury by dangerous driving in connection with the incident, which happened while he was taking 74 pupils aged between 11 and 16 to Henry Beaufort School in Winchester, Hampshire, on September 10 last year.


The 16-year-old victim suffered a deep cut to her face which required surgery for nerve damage, an injury which has forced her to give up her ambition to be a model.

She said: “As a result of the nerve damage I have a droop in my lip so at the beginning I struggled to keep food and drink in my mouth, which was so embarrassing.

“My plan was to start a modelling career but how could I do that now with a scar all down my face.”

She added that she has been unable to attend school since the crash apart from for exams, and would not be able to take up a place at a fashion college.

She said: “I am a 16-year-old girl who is conscious about her appearance, my future career has been ruined and it’s really difficult for me to deal with scars on my face.

“This was meant to be one of the best years of your life instead of which it was the worst year of my life, I couldn’t go back to school, I couldn’t face everyone looking at me reminding me of that day.”

Daily Echo:

The second victim, a 15-year-old girl, said: “The noise of the roof being ripped off, the darkness, the flying glass and the sounds of people screaming is something I will never forget.

“For a time I thought I was going to die.”

She also underwent surgery for nerve damage caused by cuts to her face, and added: “It’s horrible to think I may never get all the movement back and I may never be able to smile properly again.

“Every time I look in the mirror it takes me back to the crash.”

The third victim, a 14-year-old boy, described how he suffered a deep cut to his eyebrow which has required surgery for nerve damage.

He said he had been forced to give up playing football because he cannot head the ball and he also now suffers from anxiety.

In a statement read to Winchester Crown Court, he said: “I do feel I have been less confident in socialising since the crash, I spend more time in my room and can be short-tempered.

“The circumstances from that day will stay with me forever, every time I look in the mirror I am reminded.”