A BUS driver from York with Asperger's Syndrome who was called an 'imbecile'  and an 'illiterate cretin' by work colleagues has won a £30,000 payout.

Tom Holland, 35, who lives in Haxby, said he worked as a driver for A&A Coach Travel Ltd, then based at Tockwith and now in Harrogate, as driver for two periods, from September 2016 - May 2019 and then again from June 2019 - December 2020, during the pandemic.

It was during the latter period that the bullying occurred.

A Leeds employment tribunal found Mr Holland was subjected to frequent name-calling and abuse related to his disability and was threatened with dismissal from his job.

They heard how Mr Holland was told: 'Just do what you are told to do you special needs waste of space'.

And how he was also called an 'imbecile' an 'illiterate cretin' and referred to as 'Mr Bean'.

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In the end Mr Holland was constructively dismissed and after he'd left the firm he was reported to the DVLA and his former employer wrote to a new employer putting his new job in jeopardy.

The firm which provides bus services, including contracts to take pupils to and from local schools, has refused to comment saying they are appealing the panel's decision.

The panel heard that said Mr Holland would cry himself to sleep, dreading going into work everyday and hoping the behaviour would stop. The tribunal heard that he was eventually forced to quit when constructively dismissed by the firm.

As a result he has been referred to counselling and described himself as being unable to sleep with his stammer returning. His father told the panel that Mr Holland's behaviour changed with him becoming withdrawn and not showing an interest in things and constantly worrying.

The panel awarded Mr Holland £29,000 for injury to feelings plus £1,500 costs.

Mr Holland who has been a bus driver for over seven years, and said he is now "much happier in life" working for a company near Doncaster, said: "I was in a really dark place at the time, I didn't have anyone to talk to about what was going on and the fact that it carried on even after I left, with them contacting my new employer meant I couldn't get away from it.

"Now I just want my award. The tribunal have found in my favour and I just want what's owed to me."