Safety fears as Hampshire school crossing patrols face axe | #schoolsaftey

  • By Natalia Forero
  • Local Democracy Reporting Service

Image caption,

Hampshire County Council is planning to assess every school crossing patrol in the county

Crossing patrols outside Hampshire schools could be axed as part of a council’s plan to save £1.1m.

Hampshire County Council is planning to assess every school crossing patrol in the county to determine whether alternatives could be put in place.

The council said getting children to school safely was its responsibility and further consultations and work are yet to be done.

But parents said they fear the plan will put children in danger.

Speaking at a council meeting, Aldershot parent Lisa Greenway told councillors that the “lollipop person represents more than a safety value”.

“Could Hampshire afford the cost of increased accidents?” she said.

“If this cut goes through, could you really sleep at night if a child is killed as a result of the lack of school crossing patrols?”

Another resident, Bill O’Donnovan, said the end of the service would imply more parents taking their children to school, resulting in extra traffic and carbon emissions.

The council’s proposals are part of a plan to reduce a £132m financial gap by 2026.

Councillor Nick Adams-King, cabinet member for universal services, gave the green light to send the proposed cuts to cabinet in November.

He stressed that this was the start of the process and further consultations would follow.

“Maybe there are practical things we can do that mean we don’t need the school crossing patrol at some places, but maybe in other sites, it won’t be possible not to have them around,” he said.

School crossing patrols in Southampton and Portsmouth will not be affected as Hampshire County Council does not regulate them.

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