A NURSE at Whiston Hospital says she was left feeling "embarrassed and confused" after a bus driver told her to get off the bus to work for not having the correct change.

Maternity Support Worker Jane McMahon, from Prescot Road, takes the 6.30am 10A Stagecoach bus to work at the hospital each day with no trouble.

However, yesterday morning (Thursday) she was shocked to be told to get off the bus after trying to pay with a £20 note.

She says this made her late for work at this crucial time and having to pay for a taxi.

Jane, 48, said: "I went to the bus stop on time to get my usual bus and when I got on I showed the driver my NHS ID pass, as many of the drivers have been giving me free travel with what is going on.

"He asked 'why are you showing me that?' and I explained, but he said 'that's just a rumour, you have to pay'.

"So that was fine. I opened my purse and I only had £20 and offered this to him, and he said 'do you have anything less?'.

"I explained that I didn't so he made me get off the bus.

"I was so embarrassed and confused because I get this bus all the time, and other people were on the bus.

"I didn't have my uniform on, but I showed my NHS ID pass, so he could clearly see what I was but by making me get off the bus he made me late for work.

"Especially at this time with coronavirus I just felt appalled by this. I've never had trouble with Stagecoach before.

"I called for a taxi and I was that upset I ended up telling the drive what happened.

"It was just so shocking in light of what is going on."

That taxi driver was 59-year-old Joe Millea, from Thatto Heath, who works for Britannia Taxis.

He took to Facebook to share his disgust of this incident, which received a thousand comments from the shocked public.

Speaking to the Star, the granddad-of-19 said: "I was really upset for this nurse when I picked her up, how can a bus driver just chuck a nurse off the bus like that, especially with all this Covid-19 stuff. We need our NHS more than ever.

"She waited about 20 minutes for that bus then the driver treats her like that over £20.

"I offered to lower the fare for her when we arrived at Whiston Hospital but she said no 'we all have to make a living'.

"But for the rest of the day I couldn't shake how much this bothered me so I shared it online.

"It's disgusting because she was late for work because of that.

"At the moment their travel should be free anyway for all they are doing for us."

Matt Davies, managing director of Stagecoach Merseyside and South Lancashire, said: "We are very concerned to hear of the difficulties our customer faced when travelling to work on the 10A service.

"Although we are actively encouraging all of our customers to pay by card or mobile phone, we are still taking cash and customers should not be asked to leave if we have insufficient change.

"We are sorry if this happened and have launched an internal investigation.

"We are proud to be providing lifeline bus services needed for our key workers and we have built our revised timetables around the needs of our key workers who are working hard to fight the virus.

"Together with other bus operators, we are working with local and national government on how buses can continue to play a crucial role in helping the country at this time, and a number of options are being discussed, including how buses can further help the health service and other priority areas."