A pensioner was forced to walk over a mile home in the heat after he was turned away by a bus driver.

Angus Douglas returned home to Shaw Close exhausted and ‘on his knees’ after the unexpected trek.

The 85-year-old had walked to his doctor’s surgery in Totton and had planned to catch his usual number 11 Bluestar bus home.

But upon reaching the bus stop Mr Douglas, who suffers from dementia, realised he had left his bus pass and wallet at his house.

He was turned away by the Bluestar driver who said he did not have enough money to pay the fare, leaving Mr Douglas high and dry on the roadside.

Daily Echo: Mr Douglas with his bus passMr Douglas with his bus pass (Image: Newsquest)

His wife Diana, 81, said the incident left her ‘furious.’

She said: “Angus was gone for quite a while and when he came home, he looked absolutely dreadful.

“He was almost on his knees and his face was grey.

“He had gone out without his wallet and only had a few coins on him. Angus said the driver told him to get off the bus.

“There was no compassion. I was absolutely furious as he looked awful when he came home. It was so hot that day.”

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Mrs Douglas said she immediately sent an email to Bluestar about the incident on May 22 and received a reply three days later.

She said: “They told me the driver was ‘acting in accordance with the terms and conditions of travel.’

“I was furious they could do that to an 85-year-old man. He had a bleed on the brain in 2018 which resulted in a stroke, so since then his memory has been poor.

“There was no compassion or empathy for Angus, who has all these problems with his memory.

“I would like an apology; their reply was so stark. It showed no compassion.”

Daily Echo: Diana and Angus DouglasDiana and Angus Douglas (Image: Newsquest)

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Mr Douglas, who catches the bus two to three times a week, said walking the route for a second time in the sun ‘made him worse.’

He said: “I accept that people sometimes try to pull the wool over bus drivers’ eyes, but the driver can’t have thought that’s what I was doing.

“I looked at the money I had, and the driver said it was not enough. And that was that – I had to walk back.

“I accept that people have rules, but anybody that has rules can always change them.

“Bluestar can obviously use their discretion as I have seen them doing it before.”

Richard Tyldsley, Bluestar general manager, said members of staff have 'extensive' training in how to help those with dementia. 

He said: “I am sorry to learn of Mr Douglas’ recent experience when travelling with us.

“It is true to say that our drivers are instructed to ensure customers pay the correct fare for their journeys.

“However, our team receives extensive and regular training in how to serve those who have dementia. 

“We understand that people living with dementia rely on our services in order to carry out their everyday activities - and we know they have special requirements when travelling with us."

Daily Echo:

He added: “With this in mind, we added a specific dementia-friendly aspect to our customer promise course, which all our drivers have completed.

“Our new buses also have light-coloured flooring, because we know many of those with dementia fear darker spaces. 

“The fact that we have worked so hard to ensure those with dementia can travel comfortably and safely with us, makes this feedback very disappointing.

“I am investigating the matter, to establish the full circumstances behind the incident.

“I would also like to look into the fare our driver asked for, but need details of the journey our customers wished to take. It certainly should have been capped at £2 for a single trip.

“I hope this experience doesn’t prevent Mr and Mrs Douglas from travelling with us in the future."