Sutton Council u-turn on decision to remove lollipop lady from post outside Hackbridge Primary School

A lollipop lady in Hackbridge Road

A lollipop lady in Hackbridge Road

First published in News
Last updated
This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , Assistant Editor

Parents preparing their children to return to school will be delighted after Sutton Council confirmed a temporary lollipop lady post will continue at a controversial new road layout.

The Heart of Hackbridge project has drawn strong criticism since its construction at the beginning of the summer, and after complaints from parents at Hackbridge School, Sutton Council offered to hire a temporary lollipop lady until July.

Continued campaigning has resulted in the continuation of the post on September 3 when school term begins, though the position will only be filled until half term at the end of October.

At the centre of the fight has been mother of three Tracey Collins, who has collected more than 500 signatures on a petition to hire a lollipop lady permanently

Ms Collins, 41, who lives in Hackbridge, said: "My children and other people’s children have to cross that road every day to go into school, and lollipop lady is essential to keep them safe.

"The new layout relies on confusing people to make them slow down, I cannot see the logic in that personally.

At the centre of the controversy is a roundle, described as a roundabout but without any of the markings, as well as six courtesy crossings, where pedestrians are expected to make eye-contact with drivers to ensure it is safe to cross

A Sutton Council spokesman said: "The council decided to put a temporary school crossing patrol officer in place in June to assist the school while work was going on. Up until then, like the majority of schools in the borough, the crossing did not have a full-time officer for Hackbridge School. 

"Everyone knew this would only be a temporary arrangement and the extension of this goodwill gesture is for the new school term is simply to enable parents, children and road users to get used to the new arrangements. We have to meet national standards for deciding where we place school crossing patrol officers and have to be fair to all schools in our borough.

"The new road scheme – which is still not finished - has already perceptibly reduced traffic speed and we remain confident it will make the area safer. The scheme passed a series of safety audits during its development including an assessment by safety experts at Transport for London

"In line with standard practice, further safety audits will be carried out over the next few weeks and results will be made publicly available. The council will review the results of the safety audits and make recommendations accordingly."

Comments (8)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

7:59pm Wed 20 Aug 14

Siobhan Tate says...

Well done Tracey for showing such great leadership and community mindedness
Well done Tracey for showing such great leadership and community mindedness Siobhan Tate
  • Score: 10

12:14pm Thu 21 Aug 14

JMA2014 says...

This is great news but it does not help you if you want to cross the roads at any other time of day or at the weekends or if you want to cross London Road. What we need is the reinstatement of properly marked crossings. My husband stopped to allow someone to cross the road last week and he was 'beeped' by the car behind. I have seen vans parked on the crossings and this morning, 2 cars were parked on the double yellow lines outside Sainsburys. The whole system is a joke and probably illegal.
This is great news but it does not help you if you want to cross the roads at any other time of day or at the weekends or if you want to cross London Road. What we need is the reinstatement of properly marked crossings. My husband stopped to allow someone to cross the road last week and he was 'beeped' by the car behind. I have seen vans parked on the crossings and this morning, 2 cars were parked on the double yellow lines outside Sainsburys. The whole system is a joke and probably illegal. JMA2014
  • Score: 5

12:53pm Thu 21 Aug 14

PeterM says...

So the Council think that we should be grateful that they are extending the use of the lollypop lady for a few more weeks, whoop-de-doo.

The whole scheme has been a farce from start to finish, no sorry, it's still not finished yet, WHY NOT?

The courtesy crossings were meant to be painted into the new red tarmac, which is why we had to wait for a few weeks, then without warning they were changed to cobbles, which if you are on a bicycle are extremely uncomfortable to ride over, and in the wet, I imagine are very slippery and potentially lethal.

Tom Brake MP, previously a great supporter of the scheme, has suddenly gone very quiet and now refuses to answer questions on about it, saying there is going to be a safety audit in September. Why wasn't the audit carried out BEFORE?

The Roundel is one of the problems, because it makes it look like it's a roundabout, when it's not. It would have been safer if there was nothing there, and that it was just an open space.
So the Council think that we should be grateful that they are extending the use of the lollypop lady for a few more weeks, whoop-de-doo. The whole scheme has been a farce from start to finish, no sorry, it's still not finished yet, WHY NOT? The courtesy crossings were meant to be painted into the new red tarmac, which is why we had to wait for a few weeks, then without warning they were changed to cobbles, which if you are on a bicycle are extremely uncomfortable to ride over, and in the wet, I imagine are very slippery and potentially lethal. Tom Brake MP, previously a great supporter of the scheme, has suddenly gone very quiet and now refuses to answer questions on about it, saying there is going to be a safety audit in September. Why wasn't the audit carried out BEFORE? The Roundel is one of the problems, because it makes it look like it's a roundabout, when it's not. It would have been safer if there was nothing there, and that it was just an open space. PeterM
  • Score: 9

3:20pm Thu 21 Aug 14

jwfolan says...

agree with PeterM, but as he knows my concern is not for cyclists going over the cobbles.

My concern is peoples inability to safely cross the road due to the invisible crossings and the lack of markings/signage.

The whole thing is a joke and until someone gets seriously hurt nothing will be done.

I voted for Tom as he goes the extra mile, but in this he seems to have ignored us all.
agree with PeterM, but as he knows my concern is not for cyclists going over the cobbles. My concern is peoples inability to safely cross the road due to the invisible crossings and the lack of markings/signage. The whole thing is a joke and until someone gets seriously hurt nothing will be done. I voted for Tom as he goes the extra mile, but in this he seems to have ignored us all. jwfolan
  • Score: 6

10:24pm Thu 21 Aug 14

jojonige says...

Whilst I am pleased that the lollipop person has been extended - well done Tracey! - I can't help but feel that this is just to shut us up for the moment, the real problem is the crossings - the zebra crossings need to be PUT BACK! They should have never been taken out! These 'courtesy crossings' are insane, nobody knows these are even crossings, its ludicrous! Sort it out please!
Whilst I am pleased that the lollipop person has been extended - well done Tracey! - I can't help but feel that this is just to shut us up for the moment, the real problem is the crossings - the zebra crossings need to be PUT BACK! They should have never been taken out! These 'courtesy crossings' are insane, nobody knows these are even crossings, its ludicrous! Sort it out please! jojonige
  • Score: 2

10:30pm Thu 21 Aug 14

mariemdb says...

The whole new layout is awful and so unsafe. I no longer live in Hackbridge but still go there frequently and my child will too. The crossings need to be proper crossings and as for the roundel!! Some people treat it as a roundabout and others not! Either put in a proper mini roundabout or remove it all together. There is going to be a nasty accident if something is not done quickly. It's not safe for drivers and it's not safe for pedestrians of any age esp children, and the elderly. Please act Sutton Council before it's too late.
The whole new layout is awful and so unsafe. I no longer live in Hackbridge but still go there frequently and my child will too. The crossings need to be proper crossings and as for the roundel!! Some people treat it as a roundabout and others not! Either put in a proper mini roundabout or remove it all together. There is going to be a nasty accident if something is not done quickly. It's not safe for drivers and it's not safe for pedestrians of any age esp children, and the elderly. Please act Sutton Council before it's too late. mariemdb
  • Score: 2

9:37am Fri 22 Aug 14

PeterM says...

The problem with these 'courtesy' crossings is that they don't really stand out because they are grey(?) cobbles. If the Council had stuck to the original plans and painted them on the road then road users might realise what they are and let the pedestrians across.

As it is, they are of benefit to no one.
The problem with these 'courtesy' crossings is that they don't really stand out because they are grey(?) cobbles. If the Council had stuck to the original plans and painted them on the road then road users might realise what they are and let the pedestrians across. As it is, they are of benefit to no one. PeterM
  • Score: 1

10:36am Fri 22 Aug 14

jwfolan says...

all they have to do is:

paint the crossings - no need to remove the cobbles.
put road markings down at the round about junction
put signs up so people know there is a roundabout and crossings coming up.

Also 6 crossings at junction is excessive.
all they have to do is: paint the crossings - no need to remove the cobbles. put road markings down at the round about junction put signs up so people know there is a roundabout and crossings coming up. Also 6 crossings at junction is excessive. jwfolan
  • Score: 2

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree