Monday 25 June 2018

Council lifts ban on lollipop man giving children high fives

Councils have been cracking down on high fives from crossing guards claiming they could be a distraction
Councils have been cracking down on high fives from crossing guards claiming they could be a distraction

Alex Matthews-King

A veteran lollipop man who was banned from high-fiving children, will be allowed to use the greeting after all.

Earlier this week Stockport Council barred 83-year-old Colin Spencer from giving out high fives, over fears that it could leave him distracted.

But, following an outpouring of public support for Mr Spencer, the council issued a new statement saying its decision was “clearly wrong”.

It also apologised for the unnecessary concern it had caused.

Mr Spencer has supervised the crossing by St George’s Primary School for 14 years and said in an interview with ITV News that he had never once had a pupil hurt, or been hurt himself.

The council had told him crossing staff have to continually observe road and traffic conditions and should focus on their core duty of “ensuring highway safety”.

Pupils and parents struggled to understand the decision, after receiving a text from officials asking that they no long high- five Mr Spencer or – in a follow-up text – to only do so when stood on the pavement.

But a few days later the council changed its mind.

A spokesperson said: “Following the recent reports surrounding Stockport Council’s lollipop man, Colin Spencer, we want to apologise for the unnecessary concern caused by the issuing of an instruction that was clearly wrong.”

It comes as another lollipop man, Bryan Broom, this week quit his post in Hull after being told by East Riding Council that high-fiving pupils could be construed as grooming.

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