Some Kirklees schoolchildren face having to pay full fare on the bus from Wednesday amid confusion over a change in bus passes.

Metro has issued a new plastic smartcard - the MCard - to replace the old paper version of the Young Person’s PhotoCard.

But despite the company’s best efforts – including press releases, letters to schools and notices at bus stops and on buses – many youngsters and schools have remained unaware of the changes.

Tommy Gorman, 12, travels from his home in Marsh Lane, Shepley, to Scissett Middle School every day. Although his photocard doesn’t expire until 2018, the driver on today’s bus told him that from tomorrow his pass would no longer be valid and he would have to pay full fare.

His sister, 10-year-old Libby, makes the same journey but as she is a new traveller and already has one of the plastic smartcards, she will continue to pay half fare.

Their father, Peter, immediately contacted Metro today to get some answers. He said that, while the lady he spoke to was very polite, she told him that rules are rules and the old photocard was no longer valid.

Mr Gorman said: “I think it’s an absolute scandal that children are in school uniform and have to pay full fare.

“You get the new cards online and it takes five days to get one. In the meantime Tommy will have to pay the full fare. The lady from Metro said that there were adverts on buses and in bus stops, but kids don’t notice.

“I spoke to the teacher at Scissett Middle School who liaises with Metro on an almost daily basis and he said they had never heard of it.”

Headteacher Helen Baxter, said that the first she had heard of the changes was when Mr Gorman and then the Examiner contacted the school this morning.

She said: “We have checked all our e-mails and we were not informed of the new photocards.

“In summer we were informed that children would need travel passes. This is normal and there was no mention of the new plastic smartcards.

“Yorkshire Tiger are still waiting for confirmation as to what is a valid pass. There has obviously been a lack of communication. I think the date should be extended to allow working parents time to get the new cards.”

John Henkel, West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s acting director for transport, said: “Young people told us they wanted to use smartcards for their bus and train travel. We have already issued over 80,000 smart photocards to school and college students.

“There may be a small number of older paper photocards still being used and we have spent some time encouraging young people to swap their paper PhotoCard for a free smartcard.

“Young people can then use the smart photocard to make savings on a SchoolPlus weekly or monthly ticket by buying from a travel centre or Payzone outlet. We, with bus operators, are progressing plans so young people can also load money onto their cards and pay for individual journeys in 2015.”

Smartcards are available online at and take five working days to arrive, or from Bus Station Travel Centres.

A spokesman for Metro said that, according to their records, Scissett should have received a full information pack with posters and leaflets week beginning August 4, and added: “We can only apologise if they have not received it for some reason and we will carry out a full investigation.”