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Bus pass picture shock

PUBLISHED: 15:09 17 April 2008 | UPDATED: 10:52 03 July 2010

WHEN Gorleston woman Norma Abrey received her new bus pass, she was shocked to see another person's face staring back at her.

The 69-year-old received her new pass last Friday, entitling her to free travel on bus services across England, but she believed the face in the photo on the front was the woman who was standing next to her in the queue at the Town Hall when she registered on September 17.

WHEN Gorleston woman Norma Abrey received her new bus pass, she was shocked to see another person's face staring back at her.

The 69-year-old received her new pass last Friday, entitling her to free travel on bus services across England, but she believed the face in the photo on the front was the woman who was standing next to her in the queue at the Town Hall when she registered on September 17.

She feared the council may have got other people's identities mixed up for other services or given out personal information.

Mrs Abrey said: “When I got the card I thought it was wonderful but I never thought it would have the wrong face on it. But if they can get it wrong on one thing, then they can get it wrong on something else as well.”

And to compound the error, her husband Alexander's name was misspelt as Alexanda on his new pass.

But the blunders came as a surprise to the couple because everything appeared to be running smoothly when they visited the town hall for the registration, which took place in alphabetical order between September 17 and November 16.

Yarmouth man Dean Maddison also contacted the Mercury because he has not yet received his new pass, which he is entitled to because he has learning difficulties.

The Albion Road resident said when he tried to use his old pass to catch a bus, the driver told him to get off because his card was out-of-date.

He said: “They told me it was the old one and I was not allowed to use it on the bus.”

Patricia Guin, assistant customer services manager at the borough council, said there had been “date quality” issues with 73 of the 14,500 passes issued and new accurate passes were being produced. She said in the meantime the old cards could still be used to travel in Norfolk while temporary bus passes were available to those travelling within England.

Estelle Bawden, the council's customer services manager, said: “We have been working closely with bus operators to get them to agree to accept the previous passes during the transition period.”

The new scheme was introduced on April 1 to enable pass holders to travel anywhere in the country.

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