Local traffic group make last attempt to save Newcastle lollipop crossings

Thousands of residents in Gosforth have urged Newcastle City Council to save school crossing attendants.

The council are looking to remove these attendants due to budget cuts made which will save the council money.

Local transport group Gosforth Traffic presented a petition to the council which insisted they change their decision to remove patrols outside of schools.

The traffic group was set up in 2012 and was designed to help let the people of Gosforth know what was going on in their local area.

John Dockerty, who runs the Gosforth Traffic group, said: “I was contacted about 3 and a half weeks ago by a resident asking if there was anything we could do to save Jim, a school crossing warden on Broadway East.

“This school crossing serves four schools in Gosforth, and is situated on a near blind bend which parents consider extremely dangerous.”

After becoming involved with this ever developing problem, the traffic group highlighted this issue on their Facebook page.

That evening, the post was viewed by over 6,000 people and shared extensively across social media platforms.

Gosforth Traffic group then set up a petition, which at the final count received over 2,500 signatures – which meant John could directly address the council about this issue.

John said: “Once the petition got over 2,500 signatures I could address the council myself, anything less would have meant our local councillor would have done so on my behalf.

“Traffic patrol attendants are essential in our community, and because they in place they encourage parents and their children to walk to school.

The petition and social media activity received masses of support, but John reiterated that he “wasn’t sure what the outcome would be.”

Parents in Gosforth are very upset at these proposed cuts, and feel the safety of their children is being neglected.

Hilary Macnair, a parent in the Gosforth area, said: “As a single parent of a little boy in the area to hear of the cuts to lollipop is very concerning.

“Surely there should be money set aside to protect this important service as it provides a much safer environment in the ever increasing busy traffic.

“There’s countless buses and cars in Gosforth, coupled with multiple schools and the elderly who struggle to cross the road.

“This seems like a completely unacceptable cut.”

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