Stephen Frizzell was delighted when he got a refund from the Child Support Agency.

But he was stunned when it turned out to be a cheque for just 20p.

Hotel manager Stephen, 31, of Fenham, Tyneside, had thought his "windfall" might be a little more than coppers after paying £201 a month for his 12-year-old daughter Natasha since February.

Stephen, assistant manager at Newcastle's Royal Station Hotel, says he is happy to provide for his daughter to his ex-partner Nicola.

But he reckons his cheque was a waste of CSA funds.

He said: "I got a letter from the CSA saying I had paid too much and I could see there was a cheque.

"I had a smile on my face thinking I was getting a decent amount back. But the smile soon disappeared when I saw the cheque was for 20p.

"It cost more to send it by post, and I'd pay more in bus fares to go to the bank to cash it. It's a waste of money and a joke."

A CSA spokesman said the agency was right to refund the money.

"If somebody underpays us, we chase them, and if someone overpays, we give it back.

"If we didn't give it back, it would mount up, even if the amount in question is just 20p."