Dear Chief Secretary to the Treasury,
I'm afraid to tell you there's no money left.
Signed, Liam Byrne

(Outgoing Labour Chief Secretary to the Treasury. May 2010)

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

How many police officers does it take to control a bus queue?

Precisely how many Police it takes to control a bus queue is uncertain, but it includes a PCSO who was originally supervising the queue and :-

Local safer neighbourhood teams, safer transport teams and police officers from Bromley, Lewisham and Greenwich were all drafted in to deal with the mob.

The Met’s dog unit and territorial support group were also called to the scene.

It all started when students going home after a day's hard work at Orpington College were told they couldn't get on a bus because it was full. Some of them thought it would be a good idea to :-
... force their way onto the bus, kicking the front and back doors.

The violence quickly escalated and a 25-year-old PCSO sustained a cut above his left eye.

Two other police officers were also struck during the incident.
and then,
The high street was shut for around an hour while officers fought running battles with the teenagers.
Mrs Rigby was interested to read the comments beneath the article in the Newshopper (thanks to Ambush Predator), including this from a bus driver,
I am a regular driver of route 51, it does not surprise me at all what happened in Orpington High St. on Tuesday. We are subjected to a barrage of verbal abuse from the time we start until we finish and we would get physically assaulted if we were not protected by an assault screen. This abuse is usually because of fare disputes, but often it is because the bus is full and we can't let any more people on. As a bus driver we are legally responsible for the safety of the bus and if it were involved in an accident and found to be overloaded we would definitely be sacked, could lose our PCV licence and could be fined or even jailed.

Arguments also occur frequently about baby buggies, we can only carry 2 unfolded in the disabled bay and 1 folded in the luggage rack, why don't young mums ever walk anywhere with their babies any more? They are amongst the most foul mouthed when we refuse them entry!

We get sworn at on a daily basis because we refuse people entry who are carrying pots of paint and inflammible liquids and people seem to think we are exempt from traffic jams and swear at us for being late, usually implying that we have been sitting in the canteen.

When the buses are turned because of late running despite the blinds clearly stating the destination and the in bus information announcing the destination, we are again verbally abused.

The 51 is actually no worse than any other route in London as I sometimes drive other routes. Fortunately I don't have many years to go before I can retire and get away from what is now a stressful and un-satisfying job.
From students, who clearly have plenty of spare time after college, there is this
wer d future so wen ur old well b der...
and this
excusee mee i dnt kno where all dis story is coming from nd i dnt kno y ppl r over exagerrating nd gettin scared chattin rubbish about orpington college students. i am a student dere nd dats not even how it happened IT WAS THE POLICE CAUSING A SCENE. nd to dat fed dat got hurt good 4 him he deserved it. all u old ppl dat live in orpington y u gettin shook 4 did n e wun touch you? NO so shut up. any way freeeeeeee da ppl dat got knickd it was'nt ur fault dese feds r gettin xcited coz dere in uniform. nd ppl if ur scared STAY IN UR HOUSE. nd stop tellin stories like u woz dere frm beggining FOOLSS
In response to concerns about the quality of teaching there is this,
Orpington college have grammar exams in place when you first apply and actually go out of their way to make sure that students who have problems with their English and grammar recieve special help. Whether or not they accept this help is another story.
But it would appear that some students have their own special reason for attending college,
i had good reason to further my edercation at orpington: free gym, ema, socialising and to learn..
Mrs Rigby is delighted to know that the main reason this young person wanted to go to the college was because it has a gym, because the government Rigby Family would pay them £30 a week Educational Maintenance Allowance so they can build some nice muscles, (especially irritating because Junior Rigby is still waiting for this year's student loan to appear) so that when they spend time with their friends they don't look too puny. Then, in their spare time, they might be able to relax study learn to spell.

Mrs Rigby thinks students like these will, presumably, be the ones that nice Lord Mandelson wants to give prior right to a University place, over and above any student who has had the misfortune to have been brought up to behave decently and to have attended a school that makes them work hard.

From the Mail

Middle-class pupils face being bumped off prestigious university courses under plans to give youngsters from poor homes an A-level 'head start', it emerged yesterday.

Unveiling a ten-year blueprint for universities, Lord Mandelson declared that published or predicted A-level grades would not be enough to win places at leading universities.

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