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'We need someone to help us cross the road,' Croydon schoolchildren tell council

LAST week the Croydon Advertiser launched a campaign to save ten school crossing patrols across the borough. Now, some of the affected children tell us - and the council - why they love their lollipop men and women "PLEASE let us keep our lollipop man," writes nine-year-old Osha Lee, above a carefully-drawn man in black boots, standing dutifully by the roadside.

"We need someone to help us cross the road. What will we do if there's no lollipop man to help us cross?"

Osha attends Elmwood Junior School, in Lodge Road, which is one of ten schools set to lose a lollipop man or woman as part of the latest round of council cuts.

Last week, parents and head teachers told the Croydon Advertiser why they believe scrapping the school crossing patrols would put their children in danger.

Now, the pupils themselves have put pen to paper to let Croydon Council know how they feel.

"Please help us keep our lollipop man," writes Tatiana Morais Serreira, who also attends Elmwood.

"He helps us cross the road and he's a good person. Please, please."

Aaaminah Akhter attends Broadmead Primary School, in Sydenham Road.

The eight-year-old's excellently drawn picture shows lollipop woman Linda Conn helping two children across the road, both of whom are shown saying "Thank you".

Her mother Humaira, who has four children at Broadmead, says Sydenham Road can get dangerously busy during the school rush.

"There are so many children using the crossing, especially in the morning," she said. "Sydenham Road is used as a cut through between Croydon and Selhurst.

"There are always people rushing to get their children to school. It doesn't make sense to get rid of the lollipop man."

Suzanne Taylor, who lives in Sydenham Road, helped her four-year-old son Ethan recreate the logo for our campaign.

He uses the crossing in Northcote Road to get to The Crescent Primary which, as a relatively new school, currently only takes reception and Year 1 pupils.

"I worry what will happen when the school is full," said Miss Taylor. "It's going to get busy."

Scrapping ten school crossing patrols will save the council £60,000 a year as part of wider plans to make £36 million in savings over the next two years.

The under-threat lollipop men and women work on roads with automated and zebra crossings.

Four years ago Miss Taylor's daughter was hospitalised after being hit by a car while on a zebra crossing outside a school in Tulse Hill.

"Just because there's a crossing doesn't mean cars always stop," she said.

Schools where crossing patrols will go under the council's cuts are:
  • Elmwood Junior School, Lodge Road, Croydon - automated crossing*
  • Oasis Academy Shirley Park, Long Lane, Addiscombe - automated crossing
  • St John's/Shirley High, Shirley Church Road, Shirley - automated crossing
  • Park Hill Junior School, Stanhope Road, Croydon - zebra crossing
  • Broadmead Junior School, Sydenham Road, Croydon - zebra crossing
  • Broadmead Junior School/The Crescent, Northcote Road - zebra crossing
  • Woodside Junior School, Morland Road, Woodside - zebra crossing **(x 2)
  • All Saints CofE Primary School, Upper Beulah Hill, Upper Norwood - zebra crossing
  • Aerodrome Primary School, Goodwin Road, Croydon - zebra crossing
* Position currently vacant **Two staff under threat

'We need someone to help us cross the road,' Croydon schoolchildren tell council

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