Our School Crossing Patrollers

70th anniversary of the School Crossing Service celebrated at special event

School Crossing Patrollers from across East Ayrshire gathered at Council HQ recently for a special event to mark the platinum jubilee of the School Crossing Patrol Service.

Provost Jim Todd welcomed the School Crossing Patrollers, who were presented with a platinum jubilee badge and thanked for their service to their communities. A video that was made for the celebration event was premiered then everyone enjoyed a delicious lunch provided by Catering Services.

The School Crossing Patrol Service was officially created by the School Crossing Patrol Act in 1953, after two road safety officers from London, Jock Brining and Dorothy Pummell, created a service in their boroughs in the late 1940’s. At this time around 90% of children and young people walked to school unaccompanied, but the growing amount of traffic was causing concern. While things have definitely changed in the last 70 years, the role the School Crossing Patrollers play in our communities has stayed consistent.

Provost Jim Todd said: “70 years of School Crossing Patrollers in our communities is 70 years of building strong relationships with local families and our children and young people. While were waiting for the event to start, colleagues were asking what we were up to and I can tell you the response was amazing -  their faces lit up and everyone asked – ‘Is my lollipop man/lady going to be here?’. It really demonstrated the huge respect and affection that people feel towards ‘their’ School Crossing Patroller.

“It was a real privilege to attend this special event and offer my thanks, on behalf of the people of East Ayrshire, to this fantastic group who between them had 498 years of service to their local communities. They are out in all weather, they engage with parents and carers and with our children and young people – they really do a brilliant job.

“I was also delighted to offer my very best wishes to Wilma Rush from New Cumnock who has just retired after 26 years’ service and to Isabella Brownlee Sloan from Galston who has retired after 22 years’ service.”