Pregnant mum claims she was ‘ordered off’ Sheffield tram

Lucy Birks and daughter Scarlet claim they were 'ordered off' the Supertram
Lucy Birks and daughter Scarlet claim they were 'ordered off' the Supertram

A heavily pregnant mother who claims she was kicked off a Sheffield Supertram has demanded an apology.

Expectant mum Lucy Birks had daughter Scarlet in her pram when she boarded the vehicle at Castle Square bound for Netherthorpe Road.

With the wheelchair space already occupied she sat on a seat opposite, pulling the two-year-old in her trolley as close as she could.

But she claims the conductor ‘stormed’ down towards her, and told her she could not sit in the space.

The 31-year-old, who is eight months pregnant, says he insisted she leave her pram and belongings and sit in another carriage, or get off at the next stop.

Lucy, of Stannington, said: “I explained I was pregnant and that I didn’t want to stand up because I was scared of falling. I fell over on the tram a couple of weeks ago, and it’s dangerous for an unborn baby.

“He said, ‘You’ve got to move, you’re taking up too much room’.”

Lucy says when the tram reached City Hall, the conductor said, ‘Right, come on then’ - something Supertram operator Stagecoach disputes.

“I was doing my best not to make a fuss in front of my daughter,” said Lucy. “If I cry she can tell I’m upset.

“We got off and caught the next tram. I sat in exactly the same spot and there were no problems.”

Lucy has lodged a formal complaint with Stagecoach.

A spokeswoman for the company said: “We expect a very high standard of customer service from all of our employees and we are continuing to investigate this matter.

“We understand there are occasions when it can be stressful for mums-to-be to use public transport, particularly if they are also travelling with prams, and we expect our staff to assist wherever possible to make their journeys easier.

“Conductors have a duty to protect the safety of all passengers by ensuring the walkway through the tram is kept clear at all times, much in the same way as the aisle of an aeroplane must be kept clear.

“We have viewed the CCTV footage from the service in this particular case which shows the customer’s pram was causing an obstruction to the tram walkway. As a result, the conductor requested the pram was moved.

“We are sorry to hear this incident caused distress to this customer. We have been in direct contact with her to talk through this matter and to reassure her about using our services in future.

“We are continuing to investigate this issue and will take any further action as necessary once our investigation is complete.”