Lollipop lady 'is a lovely job'

March 24 2017

SCHOOL crossing patrol officer Tracey Lush loves her job because she knows she is making a difference in her community.

SCHOOL crossing patrol officer Tracey Lush loves her job because she knows she is making a difference in her community.

Every day she helps children and their parents cross busy Quaker’s Road safely to get to Bromley Heath infant and junior schools.

Whatever the weather, she is ready with a smile and a kind word and just a year into the job, she knows almost every child by name.

“It is a really lovely start to the day,” she said. 

“I do feel as though I am making a difference, making sure children get to school safely, and everyone is so grateful I am here.

“It is also really sociable and helps you get to know people. I am a cheerful person anyway, and that does help, but you get what you put in.”

Mrs Lush already worked at the school as a lunchtime supervisor before becoming a patrol officer and found the hours tied in with that job and her own three children. 

“I was doing the school run here anyway,” she said. “I don’t think I realised how suitable it was for me with the hours fitting around the children but it is ideal for me.

“I absolutely love it. Even the weather in the winter doesn’t put me off.”

Now Tracey is encouraging others to think about taking on a post as a school crossing patrol officer - better known as ‘lollipop’ men and women.

South Gloucestershire Council has 10 vacancies to fill across the district and is looking for community minded people who would like to help local children travel to school safely.

The vacancies are paid posts, and patrol times vary at different schools but are generally for half an hour in the morning (approximately 8.30am to 9am) and half an hour in the afternoon (approximately 3pm to 3.30pm) during term time only.

Vacancies include posts in Winterbourne, Yate, Frampton Cotterell, Chipping Sodbury and Longwell Green.

School crossing patrols have been a feature of community life for more than 60 years and since 2001 have also been able to cross not just school children but anybody who needs help crossing the road.

Road safety officer Wendy Dykes said: “The main duty of a school crossing patrol is to judge when it is best to signal for traffic to stop and to ensure the safety of the people wishing to cross. We also look for our patrols to build and maintain a good working relationship with the children, parents, drivers and the schools that does not compromise the safety or the efficient and effective operation of the site.”

To find out more, contact the council's road safety team on 01454 863611.