Council’s apology to parents over missing lollipop lady in Dagenham

Julia Groves, her son and other parents and children from Valence Primary School in Dagenham by the

Julia Groves, her son and other parents and children from Valence Primary School in Dagenham by the crossing outside the School. - Credit: Archant

Parents have received an apology from the council for its failure to replace a lollipop lady outside their children’s school after she was taken sick more than six months ago.

A petition was signed by 150 parents in October who said their children at Valence Primary in Bonham Road, Dagenham, were at risk of being hit by cars when crossing the street.

This week the council told parents it was sorry for its “unacceptable” failure to provide another lollipop lady after the previous one was taken seriously ill in April.

Responding to an inquiry by parent Julie Groves, a council spokeswoman for Housing and Environment said: “We apologise that a suitable replacement has not been recruited before now.

“The reason for this delay was that we were unclear as to when the [lollipop lady] would return, and this also coincided with a change of line management of this service which has regrettably resulted in a breakdown in communication.”


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She added: “This is unacceptable and we have taken action to ensure that this type of error does not reoccur.”

The council said a new lollipop lady would be hired in the next few weeks so there will be one in place “as quickly as possible”.

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The apology comes after the nine-year-old daughter of one parent, Emma Forbes, was hit by a reversing car outside the school on October 7.

Molly’s arm was hurt but she did not need to go to hospital.

The petition was presented to the council by Barking MP Margaret Hodge in October, who called on the council to act “urgently”.

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