Following last week’s blog, in which I asserted that the hysteria regarding the supposed banning of England shirts was nothing more than the invention of an uneducated and racist online collective, I was troubled to see the appearance of this story, courtesy of the good old bad old Daily Mail. To save you having to click the link, here’s the jist of it:
“A toddler was ordered off a bus because the foreign driver was ‘offended’ by his England football T-shirt, his mother has claimed.
Sam Fardon, 27, was allegedly told to get off the service with her sons Dylan, two, and 10-week-old Adam as they made their way to a childcare group.
The unnamed driver, who had a Polish or Eastern European accent, said Dylan’s white England shirt was ‘offensive’ and he threatened to turf the family out on the street.
Hell in a handcart, Broken Britain, etc.”
Naturally, the story carried a picture of the patriotic family unit with the stern facial expressions that only victims can pull off:
So that’s that then. The Great British Chavs were right and I was wrong. The England shirt ban is true, it is happening, and, God help us, it really is the fault of those damned foreigners!!! OMG LOL!!!!111111
The Daily Mail readers were, inevitably, up in arms. Here’s a selection of the intelligent reasoned responses on offer:
“SACK HIM AND CHARGE HIM FOR BEING A RACIST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If it had been the other way round HE WOULD BE SCREAMING RACIST FROM THE ROOF TOPS.
– Pete, Pontefract U.K, 24/5/2010 15:50”
“If you do not like the emblems of my country………
LEAVE my country……….
– (Old) Robert, Worcester UK, 24/5/2010 16:02”
“So it’s deeply offensive to immigrants who come to this country that english children wear England shirts. I hope she sue’s the pants off him for bullying her little boy who was patriotic enough to support his mother country.
– Anne, North Yorkshire, 24/5/2010 16:20″
And, my favourite:
“This kind of incident would never happen in any other Country, what has happened to this once Great Country, the loony left are certainly in charge of the Asylum. Cameron gained a lot of votes so this sort of rubbish would be kicked into touch, but I suppose the “Mighty Lib Dems.” would have somethink to say about it.
– Jake, Warwickshire, 24/5/2010 16:02″
Of course! #nickcleggsfault
Needless to say, the bus company in question pledged to investigate the case fully in order to reprimand the bus driver who so scandalously denied the rights of honest British citizens to show a little national pride.
Only, all evidence pointed to a different story entirely. Here’s the result of First Group Buses’ inquiry:
“Following an alleged incident involving our service and the refusal of a young passenger wearing an England shirt, the following statement has been issued to the media. Paul De Santis, Commercial Director for First said: “The claim made about one of our drivers’ behaviour is a very serious one and we have been in touch with this woman several times to try to establish what actually happened.
“We have carried out a full investigation and can’t find any evidence to substantiate this claim. No driver fitting the description given was working on any routes in this area at that time. Our buses were busy around the time yet no one else has been in touch with us about this alleged incident.
“We expect the highest level of professionalism from our drivers and such an act would not be tolerated. However, in this instance it now appears that no such incident took place.
“Far from banning England shirts on our buses First is fully supportive of England’s World Cup campaign and we are, in fact, currently fitting good luck banners featuring England flags on all our buses in England.”
So, what of Sam Fardon? Surely there must be some misunderstanding, a crossed wire? I’m no conspiracy theorist, but could there be a cover-up from the bus company? The big question: What would drive an ordinary mother to tell such a bizarre lie?
Thank God for this quite superb Facebook group. Thanks to the super sleuths among their number, I can now divulge the side of the story The Daily Mail have refused to tell.
You see, this upstanding patriot is, in fact, the very same Samantha Fardon who stole a chequebook and used it to pay £5,000 to herself, together with a string of other offences in 2002.
And, shock horror, England’s rose was at it again in 2004, this time stealing from the kind-hearted couple who were trying to prevent her from forever remaining the despicable waste of oxygen she is.
Which all goes to show that The Daily Mail essentially libelled a decent and proper English company, who’ve had to waste their time and efforts in investigating and dealing with the fallout of a completely fabricated story, based on nothing but the word of a proven liar, an undoubted cheat, and an apparent pox on society who thought nothing of using her own innocent child as a pawn in this bizarre game. And, as yet, they’ve neglected to offer a correction or apology. THERE’S your Broken Britain.
As for those comments on their story, isn’t it remarkable how everybody who thought to have their say on this matter was unanimous in their condemnation of this imaginary bus driver? Except I know for a fact that’s not the case, because I personally wrote a balanced comment suggesting there may be more to the story than meets the eye before the rebuttal from the bus company. I returned with an updated comment after Sam Fardon’s story was utterly compromised by pesky facts suggesting that, in the interests of fairness and honest journalism, The Mail should publish a further story including the information that had since come to light.
Neither of my comments made it through the approval stage. Funny that, isn’t it?