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Passengers organise protest against bus Scrooge Santa ban

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Passengers Joan and Aideen Goggin pictured  protesting with passengers on a Cork bus protesting to reinstate a tradition bus drivers dressing as Santa. 
Pic Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision

Passengers Joan and Aideen Goggin pictured protesting with passengers on a Cork bus protesting to reinstate a tradition bus drivers dressing as Santa. Pic Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision

Passengers Joan and Aideen Goggin pictured protesting with passengers on a Cork bus protesting to reinstate a tradition bus drivers dressing as Santa. Pic Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision

WHEN Santa is in trouble, he can always rely on a trusty elf for support.

Which is why Cork commuters took to elf costumes as well as reindeer, snowman and Christmas tree jumpers to show their support for Bus Eireann drivers banned from dressing up as Santa Claus while on duty.

The bus firm warned the decision was "in the interests of health and safety."

But passengers who use the 214 route, where driver Michael Howick is famed for his outfits claimed it was bureaucracy gone mad.

A special protest was organised for the bus route by Anna Marie O'Shea who dressed up like a North Pole elf.

The 214 route runs from Patrick Street to Cork University Hospital (CUH), Wilton and Togher.

The grandmother, accompanied by her grandson, Alex (2), said drivers weren't even being allowed to wear Santa hats.

"These drivers have brought so much happiness by their Christmas outfits that it is just Humbug to see how they have been treated."

"Bus Eireann does not have to be such Scrooges over what is just a bit of festive fun and good cheer."

Bus Eireann warned it had to adhere to safety protocols.

"Drivers must be recognised as controllers of a large vehicle that transports 60 to 70 people safely and not as Santa Claus."

hnews@herald.ie


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