Safety fears for children


Concerns have been raised by parents of pupils at a West Hallam school over fears that a nearby crossing patrol will not be replaced.

Scargill Church of England Voluntary Aided Primary School on Beech Lane saw the retirement of their lollipop lady of 14 years, Megan Grace, on April 11.

Now parents are worried about the safety of their children when crossing between Hallam Way and Beech Lane.

Vanessa Smith, of West Hallam, has two children who attend the school.

“It just doesn’t make sense to me not to replace Megan, it’s a large primary school with lots of children and sits on a dangerous bend with only room for one vehicle at a time.”

She added: “What’s different to 14 years ago when Megan started the job to now?

“Government cuts seem to mean compromising on our children’s safety - parents may now have to take it upon themselves to patrol the crossing.”

Head teacher of the school Andrew Poole said he fully supported parents’ concerns.

“The safety of my pupils is of the highest concern and I would be very upset not to see a new crossing patrol put in place,” he said.

A spokesman for Derbyshire County Council confirmed that the crossing patrol for Scargill School would not be replaced.

“Whenever a patrol becomes vacant the council use national criteria to calculate whether the road requires a patrol - in a recent test the site fell well below the level needed to replace it.”

Cllr Andy Botham, deputy cabinet member for jobs, economy and transport at Derbyshire County Council said: “We are facing unprecedented budget pressures due to cuts imposed by national government.

“In this climate we are sadly not able to provide the same level of service the public have become accustomed to.”