- 32 per cent of parents in Wales believe that safety at road crossings has worsened over the past five years
- Robert Webb helps launch campaign to put 50 lollipop men and women (‘lollipoppers’) on in need school crossings throughout the UK
- Get involved and nominate a primary school in Wales at www.Churchill.com/Lollipoppers
Motor insurance specialist, Churchill Insurance, has launched a nationwide campaign to identify schools in need of a Lollipopper and have pledged to recruit and deploy 50 in areas of need for the next school year.
Since UK legislation was introduced in 2000 stating that lollipoppers were no longer a legal requirement for schools, an increasing number of the iconic lollipoppers have been taken off the road even though over half (52 per cent) of child pedestrian casualties in Wales occur during the school run (Road Safety Analysis Research, 2016).
A recent survey by Churchill highlighted the opinions of the public in Wales when it comes to the importance of lollipoppers, with 100 per cent of parents and 79 per cent of children (aged 5-11) feeling safer with the presence of a lollipopper. A further 32 per cent of parents felt road safety at their local school had worsened in the past five years with an additional 68 per cent noting a lollipopper had recently been removed from the local area – with no suitable replacement.
The campaign, launched by actor and father-of-two, Robert Webb, will give people in Wales and throughout the UK the opportunity to nominate a primary school they feel is in need of a lollipopper before 50 are selected by representatives from Churchill, road safety charity Brake and leading parent champions PTA UK.
Residents of Wales have until Monday 16th May to nominate a local primary school by visiting www.Churchill.com/Lollipoppers. The 50 selected schools will then be announced by Friday 10th June before each lollipopper is recruited from the local community, fully trained and on the road for the new school year.
On launching the campaign, Robert Webb said: “Being a dad I’m always concerned for my children’s safety, especially during the school run when they can be easily distracted. I remember my lollipopper growing up, Barbara, and the influence she had on me at the school crossing and I want to be safe in the knowledge my kids have the same guardian keeping an eye on them. I’m delighted to help Churchill to get lollipoppers on the streets of Britain!”
Lucy Brooksbank, head of marketing, at Churchill, added: “Lollipoppers are the stalwarts of our communities, national treasures who bring fun and joy to the school run, as well as importantly keeping children safe. Churchill looks out for customer’s best interests, so what better way to demonstrate that than by supporting our Lollipoppers and taking action to keep them on our streets?
“With child pedestrian casualties during the school run still an issue in the UK, we want to put 50 Lollipoppers on school crossings. We want people from across the UK, whether they are a parent or just concerned about a local crossing, to nominate their schools and help to keep children safe during the school run.”
Mike Bristow, spokesperson from campaign partner, Brake, reinforced the need for lollipoppers to remain at the school crossing, saying: “School crossing patrols are an important service, highly valued by communities, ensuring 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. With the highest rates of child pedestrian casualties in the UK occurring during the school run, the safety of children should not be compromised as a result of financial cuts.”
Emma Williams, Executive Director of PTA UK, added: “We know that road safety around our schools is a big concern for both schools and parents. Clearly the wellbeing of our children is the priority for everyone and we are delighted to support Churchill’s campaign. Not only will this put more lollipop men and women on our streets, it will also enable parents, PTAs and schools to work together to make the school run safer.”
For more information, to nominate a school near you or to find out how you can become a lollipopper, visit www.Churchill.com/Lollipoppers