Norfolk

Golfer 'sworn at' and told to get off Norfolk train by driver

Glenn Macdonald
Image caption Glenn Macdonald has demanded an apology after he claimed he was told to get off a train for not being a key worker

A golfer says he was verbally abused by a train driver who accused him of ignoring government advice on using public transport.

Glenn Macdonald, from Norfolk, said the driver swore at him when he got on a train with his golf bag after lockdown rules on the sport were relaxed.

The driver said he would not leave until the golfer got off.

Greater Anglia trains apologised for the spat but said government advice was still to avoid public transport.

It said it was investigating the matter.

'Felt really angry'

Mr Macdonald, who does not own a car, and lives in a studio flat in Cromer, was heading to West Runton golf course on 18 May when the alleged abuse occurred.

He said: "After being locked up for 10 weeks, I felt really angry and I couldn't believe the way the man was speaking to me.

"The train driver came into where I was sitting and then just started swearing and going mad at me for getting on my train with a golf bag.

"It really upset me and made me really anxious. My head was just all over the place, basically, I couldn't believe it."

Another passenger on the service, Jacqueline Lee, 69, said the driver was "incredibly abusive".

Image caption Jacqueline Lee said she was "furious" over the train driver's alleged abuse of the golfer

"I became involved and said he had every right to be there," she said.

"The driver went back to his cab, he made a number of announcements over the tannoy, saying he wouldn't leave until the golfer got off. I was frankly furious. "

After 10 minutes, Mr Macdonald decided to leave the train and forego his game.

Image caption The keen golfer said the game was his only form of exercise

He said that when he tried to catch a train two days later, a conductor confronted him and said he should "'take up another sport'".

He has officially complained to Greater Anglia.

A spokeswoman for the train operator said: "We are very sorry for any distress our member of staff may have caused him and other passengers on the train.

"We expect our staff to offer the highest standards of customer service and courtesy to all passengers at all times - whatever their reason for travel.

"Government guidance remains to avoid public transport and only travel if your journey is necessary - this is so we can keep our trains and stations safe for essential travellers such as hospital, care home and supermarket workers travelling to work and back."

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