School staff abused in dangerous parking row
3:50pm Monday 25th February 2013 in News
STAFF at a Bolton school are bearing the brunt of daily abuse from parents who park on double yellow lines to drop off and pick up their children.
Sharples Primary School, which is in a cul-de-sac, block off the car park with cones for 20 minutes each morning and afternoon so the 225 children can safely enter and leave the school.
But parents continue to drive up the road, park on yellow lines, on people’s drives and reverse and turn round dangerously.
The problem has become so bad that the school, which has disabled and visually-impaired pupils, contacted The Bolton News and a reporter and photographer went to witness the situation first hand during the morning school run.
Staff stressed that it is a minority of parents who are causing the parking problems but fail to change their ways despite being given letters, text messages, and information on the school website.
Governor James Heyes and site manager Paul Leake stand outside the school in all weathers with cones to help marshall the children safely to and from the premises.
Mr Heyes said: “It is the children’s safety that we are interested in and that is what the parents don’t seem to get.
“It is a dead end and there is no solution, I have spent hours with the council and had no joy.”
Pauline Clarke, the school business manager, said: “Paul and James are out every day and get abuse and are now used to it.
“We are concerned that a child could get hurt.
“A lot of parents park away from the school and walk up but the minority are causing problems.”
One parent shouted she could park on the lines because they are broken and not enforceable while another swore about pictures being taken.
Nicola Walker, aged 34, who lives on Hugh Lupus Street and also has three children at the school, said: “They park right outside and when I had a double buggy I pushed it out of the door and a car swung on the pavement to park and I had to pull it back in quickly. It was really scary.
“There are so many children trying to cross. The number of times I have had to knock on reversing car windows is ridiculous.”
One driver, who asked not to be named, said: “The school needs to sort out some sort of drop-off and pick-up system.
“We have had meetings in the past but nothing has been done. Some parents are just not bothered, I park on the main road and walk up.”