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Stephensons of Essex Ltd. make every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information on this website and that this website is available for use on a continuous basis. However, Stephensons of Essex Ltd. cannot guarantee the accuracy of this website or that it will be continuously available for use and will not accept liability for any inaccuracies or if you cannot use this web site for any reason.
This website may contain links to other websites operated by third parties over which Stephensons of Essex Ltd. has no control, and Stephensons of Essex Ltd. will not be responsible for the content, accuracy or availability of such websites.
Stephensons of Essex accepts no liability for any direct or consequential loss, distress or damages resulting from whatever cause through the use of any information obtained either directly or indirectly from this website.
By using this website, you are assumed to have accepted these Terms & Conditions.
10th August 2015
Code of Conduct – School Transport
Stephensons want your journey to and from school to be as safe as possible. Every student has a personal responsibility for their own safety during every journey.
Parents/guardians also have an important role and following these simple rules will
help keep everyone as safe as possible.
At the bus stop
You are responsible for your safety and behaviour before you get on the bus, during
the journey and after you leave the bus. You must, therefore, ensure that you are
familiar with a safe procedure for getting to and from your pick up/drop off point and
ask your parent/guardian for advice if you have any concerns.
It is your and your parents’/guardians’ responsibility to make sure that you are at the pick-up point in time for the arrival of the bus. We recommend that you are at the bus
stop 5 minutes before the scheduled departure time of the vehicle as shown on the
You should wait for the bus sensibly and safely without inconveniencing other bus users, local residents and businesses. Wait until the bus has stopped and the driver has opened the doors before moving towards it; do not push or jostle.
On the bus
You should board the bus and find a seat straight away. Where seat belts are provided,
they must be worn. Do not change seats during the journey or travel in the gangways,
on the platform, in the luggage areas or on the stairs. Put your bags under your seat as
they will be safer there, and do not obstruct the gangway, stairs or emergency exits.
Please make sure that your actions do not distract the driver as this could put you at
risk as well as the driver, your friends and other road users. You should not talk to the
driver whilst they are driving, except in an emergency. Never try to operate the doors
on buses unless it is an emergency and the bus has stopped.
Please stay in your seat until the bus has stopped moving and remember to take your personal belongings with you. If you have to cross the road after getting off the bus, use a pedestrian crossing if available. Allow the bus to move away before attempting to cross the road.
Please do not eat or drink in the vehicle. If you do have litter please put it in a bin. If you forget something, take care when returning to the bus as the driver may be pulling away; if so do not attempt to stop them, but instead telephone us during office hours: 01702 541511 (Essex) or 01440 704583 (Suffolk/Cambridgeshire).
All passengers are carried subject to the provisions of the PSV (Conduct of Drivers,
Inspectors, Conductors and Passengers) Regulations 1990, as amended 1995. Any passenger who breaks these Regulations must give their name and address to the driver or inspector on request and may be removed from the bus by the driver, inspector or a police constable. If the bus is late or delayed
Occasionally the bus may be late and this may be beyond the control of the driver. If the bus is running late you should wait at the pickup point for 30 minutes before you make alternative transport arrangements for getting into school. Please make sure that you ask your parents/guardians what you should do if you are unable to board the
vehicle or if the bus doesn’t arrive within 30 minutes.
In the event of an emergency during the journey, such as a breakdown, the driver will judge whether it is better for you to stay on board or to leave the vehicle and you should follow their instructions.
Where possible, information about delays will be posted to the Service Updates page at www.stephensonsofessex.com. Most of our routes also now offer a text message alert system - you can register on-line at http://www.smsstephensonsofessex.co.uk/
Tickets, passes and fares
Term and, where available, annual passes are sold for the selection of routes and services listed on our website.
The validity periods of these passes are displayed within the order cart. Please select the appropriate one for the period you require.
The term pass is for the exclusive use of the named holder, the ticket in non-transferable.
If you have a pass or season ticket, you MUST make sure that you have your bus pass with you before you leave home. When the bus arrives please have your pass ready and show it to the driver as you board. If you cannot show your pass, you will be required to pay the cash fare.
You may also be asked to produce your ticket to an Inspector during the journey.
Remember that your season ticket or pass is not valid unless it includes a photo. Your pass/ticket is only for your own use and you should not lend it to anyone else.
If you are unable to show a valid bus pass or ticket to the driver, you MUST pay the daily cash fare. On all services, there is a strict “no ticket, no ride” policy.
If your pass is lost or damaged it will need to be replaced.
An administration fee will be charged for replacement tickets. We will not normally
agree to the issue of more than one replacement ticket per pupil in any school year.
To surrender a termly or annual ticket, you must return the original ticket to us. We do not offer refunds on lost tickets (these may be covered by your household contents insurance) or on duplicate tickets. Refunds are calculated from the date that we receive the ticket.
ALL refunds are subject to an administration fee of £20 per ticket.
The amount of the refund depends on the type of ticket and method of payment.
A ticket that has been purchased for either the autumn or spring term:
Tickets that are surrendered before the term starts will be refunded in full.
For tickets that are surrendered part way through term, we will calculate the number of days that it would have been available for use, multiplied by the relevant daily cash fare charged on bus, and will refund the difference. Passes surrendered near to the end of term may have no refund value.
Worked example: You paid us £409 for a full term ticket. You surrender it three weeks after the start of term. It would have available for 15 days, times the daily fare for the journey of £5.50, which comes to £82.50. We add the admin fee of £20 and your refund is £306.50 (£409.00 less £102.50).
Passes purchased for the summer term (after the Easter holidays) have no refund value unless surrendered before the term starts.
ANNUAL TICKETS - Purchased by Direct Debit monthly payments
- if surrendered before the payment due on December 31st, no refund will be due;
- if surrendered after the December payment and before the January payment, 55% of the amount paid will be refunded;
- if surrendered after the January 31st payment and before the final payment (March 31st), 30% of the amount paid will be refunded.
After the final payment has been received, no refunds will be given.
UNPAID DIRECT DEBITS - Stephensons of Essex reserve the right to apply an administration fee of £20.00 in the case that the customer’s bank declines the collection of a direct debit. If a payment is declined transport using the pass will be suspended, the card will be hotlisted on our systems. Transport will be reinstated once the monthly direct debit fee has been collected by us and the administration fee paid. No refunds will be made in respect of journeys undertaken which you may have had to pay a daily cash fare for during the suspension of the pass.
ANNUAL TICKETS - Purchased in advance with a single payment
- if surrendered prior to December 31st, we will refund the spring and summer term amounts;
- if surrendered before the start of the summer term, we will refund that term’s amount
- if surrendered after the start of the summer term, no refund is payable.
If paying by Direct Debit, please note that Stephensons of Essex Ltd has appointed the BACS Approved Direct Debit Bureau, Eazy Collect Services Ltd (www.eazycollect.co.uk) to collect your payments. Stephensons of Essex will be shown on your bank statement for these direct debit payments.
In the event of buses being unable to operate due to adverse weather, we regret that refunds will not be made on season tickets. Likewise, we do not make refunds for casual non-pupil days or other reasons when schools may shut temporarily.
Maintaining good standards of behaviour
We want you to enjoy your journey to and from school. If you have concerns regarding
the behaviour of other students, report it. Normal school rules apply on the bus,
including: No swearing or verbal aggression, no bullying, no fighting, no spitting, no
smoking and no drugs.
Your school and/or your parents/guardians will be informed if you harass or bully
others, fight, cause a nuisance, are offensive, cause vandalism or throw objects. Such
issues are treated seriously. Thoughtless or selfish behaviour, which brings the school's
name into disrepute, will not be tolerated. If you damage our bus or other property,
the cost of repairing the damage will be charged to your parents/guardians.
Remember that you will lose your right to use the bus if you misbehave.We, the CSSE, the County Council and schools will investigate all instances of
unacceptable behaviour and will take appropriate disciplinary action, which could
Official warnings, Detentions, Exclusion from school, Banning from the bus for an appropriate period of time or Payment for any damage caused.
You should be aware that we have CCTV systems fitted to most of our buses for public
and employee safety as well as the prevention and detection of crime. Criminal
damage or behaviour will be reported to the police. CCTV images are used in
accordance with the Data Protection Act.
By working together and supporting this policy we can maintain good standards of
behaviour on school buses and provide a comfortable, stress free and friendly
environment, which will be enjoyed by all.
Parents & guardians
Please remember that you are responsible for the safety and behaviour of your
children so you must ensure they know how to get to and from the bus safely. We do
appreciate that you may not be at home if your child is unable to board the bus, so
you should agree with them who they should contact in the event of an emergency.
If the bus breaks down or is delayed in a traffic jam, students will be advised what
action to take by the driver. Students must remain seated unless told to leave the
vehicle by the driver. If any student leaves the vehicle against the driver's advice,
they do so at their own risk.
Please be aware that in the event of severe difficulties such as flooding on the roads or significant snowfall, it may be necessary for services to be cancelled in the morning or to miss out some stops. It may also be necessary for students to be returned from their schools earlier than the scheduled times. Such a decision will only be made in consultation with the Police, Local Authorities and schools, on safety grounds.
In the case of any early morning cancellation being necessary, announcements will be made via the local radio stations and the Service Updates page on our website
www.stephensonsofessex.com. You can also register for our text message alert system as explained above. If our buses are unable to run because of adverse weather conditions, no refunds on season tickets will be made.
Parents/guardians are also advised that if their child is excluded from using the bus service for any period of time by either us, the CSSE, the County Council or by the Headteacher of the school concerned, they are not entitled to any refund in respect of their child's bus pass.
Comments and complaints
If you have a problem during a journey, please attempt to resolve this with the driver before leaving the bus.
If you are unable to resolve the problem with the driver or wish to raise an issue subsequently, you should always do so in writing or by e-mail to Stephensons at the head office address shown on our contact page.
We will use our best endeavours to operate punctually to the advertised timetable.
However, you are advised that, under the Company’s Conditions of Carriage, we will not be liable or accountable for any loss, damage, hurt, inconvenience or injury arising from the failure of our services to start or arrive at the advertised time or place or at all and will not be liable for any consequential loss.
Stephensons of Essex Ltd has been trading for over 30 years and we operate bus
services across Essex and in parts of Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. The safety of students on our school services is of paramount importance. We are licenced by the Traffic Commissioner for the Eastern Traffic Area, licence number PF0000454. All our vehicles are serviced on a five weekly schedule, and safety checks are carried out by our drivers before starting service every day. We do not generally employ staff who have less than two years’ bus driving experience, or who are under the age of 25. All our school bus drivers are subject to checks with the Criminal Records Bureau.
Many of our services are operated on behalf of Essex, Suffolk or Cambridgeshire
County Councils and some others are run in conjunction with the Consortium of
Selective Schools in Essex (CSSE), whilst other routes are commercially provided.
Slightly different rules may apply for the sale or issue of tickets and passes according
to the type of service. Please refer to the relevant service page on our website
www.stephensonsofessex.com for further information.
Stephensons of Essex Ltd
Riverside Industrial Estate
South Street, Rochford, SS4 1BS
01702 541511 (office hours)
Boreham Office (Ticketing office)
01376 503050 (office hours)
Consortium of Selective Schools in Essex (CSSE)
PO 3087, Chelmsford, CM1 3SY
Office open in school term times only
Essex County Council
Education & Social Care Transport Team
County Hall, Chelmsford CM1 1QH
08457 430 430
Cambridgeshire County Council
Education Transport Section
Box CC 1301, Castle Court, Shire Hall
Cambridge, CB3 0AP
0345 045 5208
Suffolk County Council
Endeavour House, 8 Russell Road
Ipswich, IP1 2BX
0845 606 6173
Details correct 26 May 2014