Parents think lollipoppers ‘safer than pedestrian crossings’

A survey found 95% of parents felt safer knowing there is a lollipop man or woman on their children'

A survey found 95% of parents felt safer knowing there is a lollipop man or woman on their children's school route. - Credit: PA

As children prepared to go back to school next week for the start of summer term, parents have voted overwhelmingly in favour of the good old 'lollipopper'.

Lollipop men and women help to stop traffic to allow schoolchildren to cross the road, and in new research a overwhelming 95% of parents say they feel safer knowing there is a lollipopper present on their kids' route to school.

The study, from Churchill Car Insurance, showed that more than nine out of 10 (91%) would even say that they feel a lollipop man or woman is safer than a zebra or pedestrian crossing, and 92% said they felt every school should have one.

Some 46% of children aged between five and 10 walk to school, and the statistics reflect common sense – the majority of child pedestrian casualties occur during the walk to or from school.

And 57% of parents claim that they would choose one school over another based on the presence of a lollipop sign-wielding guardian at key crossing points.

In 2000 the lollipopper law was repealed, removing the legal requirement for schools to have one. Now, 32% of parents in the survey said their local lollipop person had recently been removed and not replaced.

As for children, 79% of those without a lollipop man and woman said they would want one, but 89% said that every school should have one.

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Kelly Cook, head of motor claims at Churchill Insurance, said: 'The safety and wellbeing of children during the school run is so important to schools and parents with road crossings a critical part of the daily journey.

'Although no longer a legal requirement for schools, it is great to see that the apparently evergreen lollipopper is still valued as the safest option for parents and children but concerning that many have noticed their numbers diminishing in recent years.'

Mike Bristow, spokesman for road safety charity Brake, added: 'School crossing patrols are an important service, highly valued by communities, ensuing children can cross roads near their schools safely, without fear from traffic.

'With a decreasing number of lollipop men and women on the roads, the safety and lives of children are being put at risk as other school crossing alternatives don't offer the same level of vigilance and care.'

Has your school lost its lollipopper and put children more at risk from crossing the road? Email motoring@archant.co.uk

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