A GROUP of school friends were all dressed up with somewhere to go – their school prom – but they nearly didn’t get to the ball after the limo they’d booked to take them there didn’t turn up.
Boldon School pupil Stephanie Jackson and seven of her friends had booked one of the luxury vehicles from Starlite Limousines, in Boldon Lane, South Shields, to take them to their leavers’ prom.
The stretch limo was due to pick the girls up from Mayfield Drive, South Shields, at 6.30pm and deliver them in style to the Pullman Lodge Hotel in Whitburn Road, Sunderland, for 7.15pm. But when the limo hadn’t turned up by 7.25pm because it was held up on another job, the disappointed 16-year-olds were split into cars and taken to the party by their parents.
The firm has apologised and refunded their deposit.
Stephanie’s mum Caroline, of Hazlitt Avenue, South Shields, said: “Everyone met at Bethany Telford’s house for a pre-prom party, and we had a photographer booked to take pictures of the girls all dressed up next to the limo.
“6.30pm came and went, and there was no sign of the limo, so we phoned the company and were told that they’d been caught up at another event and were on their way.
“We left it a bit longer, and there was still no sign. We kept ringing, and there was no answer until we tried from a different number.
“The girls were worrying because they’d been told that if they weren’t at the Pullman by 7.30pm, they wouldn’t be able to have the meal.
“At 7.25pm, there was still no sign of the limo, and we just decided to put the girls in the cars and take them ourselves”
The mum of three said the parents chipped in to pay an £80 deposit for the limo and were due to pay another £100 on its arrival.
She added: “The driver eventually got there at 7.40pm. The girls were upset because they’d been looking forward to riding in the limo for ages. It was their special night.
“By the time they got there, the Gazette photographer had been and gone, so they didn’t get to have their picture in the paper like all their friends did, and they were really disappointed.”
A spokesman for Starlite Limousines said: “The prime-time prom bookings were already taken when this booking was made, and we told them that we would be a little late, but they decided to take the risk.
“We were late because we got caught up on the job before, and I sincerely apologise that we didn’t make it in time, but all transport can be late. You can be going on holiday, and your plane can be late. That’s just the way it is.
“The deposit was refunded with no problem.”