Lack of ‘lollipop lady’ putting lives at risk say Dagenham parents

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. They are worried about the safety of their children as the crossing has no lollipop lady and has not been turned into a zebra crossing. - Credit: Archant

Parents say their children are being put at risk as a primary school has been without a crossing patrol for six months.

More than 150 parents signed a petition calling for a replacement “lollipop lady” outside Valence Primary, in Bonham Road, Dagenham, after the previous one went on sick leave in April.

One parent, Emma Forbes, 32, said: “They are playing with children’s lives. If they don’t get a replacement there’s going to be a death on their hands.”


Ms Forbes’s nine-year-old daughter Molly was hit by a reversing car outside the school on October 7.

“She was crossing the road in the morning. This lady started reversing and hit my child. It was only parents shouting that made the driver stop,” Ms Forbes said.

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

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Ms Forbes added: “This was quite a mild incident, but next time it could be much worse.”

Donna Salmon, 36, who is partially sighted and has three children, said she has to rely on her hearing to cross the road.

She said: “It’s quite mad. There really needs to be someone here.”

The petition was presented to the council by Barking MP Margaret Hodge, who has supported the parents’ campaign.

It comes after the council held a summit with schools, lollipop ladies and police on reducing traffic problems outside schools.

Ms Hodge said: “It’s important that they come back urgently with proposals which address the parents’ concerns.”

A council spokesman said: “The lollipop lady at Valence Primary School is currently absent on long-term sick leave.

“We have not been able to transfer an attendant from another school.

“Therefore we are currently in the process of arranging for a temporary replacement.”