Terrington St Clement schools unite for crossing battle

School Crossing problems for Terringron St Clement Community School, 'Headteacher Liz Hackett (right) at the crossing between the schools, with petition, pupils and parents. ANL-150520-184307009
School Crossing problems for Terringron St Clement Community School, 'Headteacher Liz Hackett (right) at the crossing between the schools, with petition, pupils and parents. ANL-150520-184307009
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Parents and teachers have joined forces to launch a campaign demanding a new crossing on a busy village road with two schools.

The plea relating to Churchgate Way, Terrington St Clement coincided with an incident on Wednesday morning in which a bus, believed to have been carrying pupils to St Clements High School, was in collision with a parked car.

Although no-one was injured, school bosses say they fear a child will be seriously hurt if action is not taken.

A petition launched at the nearby St Clements Community primary school this week, calling for a pelican crossing to be installed on the road, received around 150 signatures on its first day alone.

Headteacher Liz Hackett said there had been three near misses on the road in the past year alone.

She said: “We’ve been doing this for 14 years. What price do you put on a child’s life?”

Her concerns were echoed by Nigel Williams, head of school at St Clements High.

He said: “Many older siblings take younger children across the road. We have a vested interst, as well as a community interest, in making sure they can cross that road.”

Although a lollipop person has patrolled the area in the past, campaigners say there has been not been a patrol there for almost a year.

A Norfolk County Council spokesman said the authority is still trying to recruit a worker, but there were no immediate plans to build a permanent crossing, due to limited funding and a low accident record.

But she added: “we take safety concerns seriously and have previously installed pedestrian barriers by the school gates.

“We are always willing to meet with the school to discuss any other potential safety measures which could be put in place if funding is provided from a different source.”

But Miss Hackett said the road’s problems had been well known for many years.

She said: “It’s a narrow road and the Cylcing Proficency people say if pupils learn to ride on Churchgate Way they can ride anywhere. It’s that dangerous a road.”

The campaign launch has also coincided with a walking to school campaign at the community school this week.

Its chair of governors, Claire Whitehouse, said a permanent crossing would also serve the village’s doctors’ surgery and post office, as well as the two schools.

She said: “This would be an asset and improve safety for the whole community.”

Just over four miles from the two schools, residents in West Lynn are currently fundraising for a crossing on Clenchwarton Road, near the entrance to the Poppyfields housing estate, after a girl was injured in a collision with a car there last October.

School officials say they are considering launching their own fundraising campaign for a crossing, as well as a possible application to the Terrington Community Fund for financial support.