Students' bus anger

STUDENTS from Otley College have been left fuming after constantly being left stranded because all their buses are full. They have been left stranded several times after buses left them behind in Ipswich - and end up arriving more than two hours late for their college classes.

STUDENTS from Otley College have been left fuming after constantly being left stranded because all their buses are full.

They have been left stranded several times after buses left them behind in Ipswich - and end up arriving more than two hours late for their college classes.

Jayson Watling is a 19-year-old trainee mechanic from Nacton and is getting used to missing the bus.

He said: “There are three operators going to Otley every morning, Ipswich Buses, Eastern Counties, and Beestons. The buses are often too crowded to get on and leave us behind.

“That means we have to wait until 10.30am to get the bus in - and by the time we get there we have missed the first classes in the morning.

“I'm on a three-year course and go in one day a week. I keep missing my classes so at this rate my three-year course is going to take six years!”

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Jamie Dunlop, 17, from the Gainsborough estate in Ipswich said it was not unusual to find the buses were too full - and if that was the case they would often leave people waiting at the bus stop.

“It was difficult to explain the problem to staff at first, but now they realise there is a problem and they've tried to talk to the operators and the council about it.”

The services are operated as part of a Suffolk County Council contract to take students to the college.

Ipswich Buses boss Malcolm Robson said he was aware there had been concerns in the past but thought these had now been resolved. He said there are strict limits on how many people can be taken on buses for safety reasons.

A spokeswoman for the county council said some buses were now only accepting only students who were carrying the council's termly pass to ensure that they had a seat to the college.

However she acknowledged this was no use to those who attended the college only once or twice a week.

She urged students to speak to the college and get them to speak to council officials to try to ensure that large enough buses are put on the services.

Mr Watling said: “There is no point in me getting a pass - it costs well over £100 and I don't spend anywhere near that on fares once a week.”

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