THE driver of a school bus which had its roof torn off when it struck a railway bridge has appeared at Basingstoke Magistrates' Court.

Martin Robert Walker, of Hood Road in Southampton, has been charged with three counts of serious injury by dangerous driving on September 10.

Three children needed surgery while 12 others suffered minor injuries when the Stagecoach bus crashed in Wellhouse Lane, Winchester, on the way to Henry Beaufort School. 

Appearing in court today (Tuesday, April 6) dressed in a white shirt and black trousers, the 36-year-old spoke only to confirm his name and address and entered no plea to the charges. 

Magistrates sent the case to crown court to be dealt with due to the "seriousness of the accusations". 

Mr Walker will remain on unconditional bail and will next appear at Winchester Crown Court on May 5 at 10am.