Parents dropping children off at Bancroft's School in Woodford Green, warned about endangering pedestrians

A car mounts the pavement yards from pedestrians during the school run on Whitehall Road

A car mounts the pavement yards from pedestrians during the school run on Whitehall Road

First published in Redbridge East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Photograph of the Author by , Senior reporter

PARENTS are endangering the lives of children on the school run by driving and parking their cars on pavements.

A letter has been sent to parents of children at Bancroft’s School in High Road, Woodford Green, warning them to modify their behaviour.

The letter, from the school’s deputy head Marwan Mikdadi, follows complaints from pedestrians about cars mounting the pavement on Whitehall Road.

In the letter, Mr Mikdadi, says: “Not only are they (parents) breaking the law and/or controlled zone parking restrictions but they are risking the lives of other children.

“Is another child’s life really worth the extra five minutes you think you don’t have, or the extra few metres your own child may have to walk to get to school? “

Speaking to the Guardian, Mr Mikdadi added that the school had staggered pick up times to try to alleviate the problem.

And he said they would be entering into discussion with Redbridge Council about a plan to turn the current entrance on Whitehall Road into an exit, with traffic funnelled into the school through an entrance on the corner of High Road and Whitehall Road

Vicky Babbs, 45, who walks her daughter to Woodford Wells primary school along Whitehall Road is one of those to have complained to Bancroft’s.

She has also written to Redbridge council, her local councillors and the police about the issue.

She said: “I’m terrified that my daughter will get hit by one of these cars.

“It’s not just about people parking on the pavement in the morning.

“In the afternoon they all queue in the middle of the road to turn into the car park and frustrated motorists just drive along the pavement to get past.

“I have emailed photos to the council on a daily basis in an effort to get something done.

“But frankly they are about as useful as a chocolate fireguard.”

Mrs Babbs said she was pleased that the school was making efforts to talk to parents about their behaviour, but it appears many of them are refusing to listen.

When the Guardian visited the site on Thursday afternoon, we saw two cars driving with two wheels on the pavement within the space of five minutes.

Gemma White, 42, who lives in Newlands Road, said she had confronted several motorists about their behaviour.

“I know the school has asked them not to park on the pavement, but it hasn’t stopped the problem,” she said.

“My children have seen me having all sorts of arguments with people, I’ve had a lot of abuse for telling people to get off the pavement. It’s dangerous and inconsiderate.”

Monkhams ward councillor Linda Huggett says she will try to help resolve the problem.

She added: “I will be asking council officers to meet with the deputy head and decide what traffic measures need to be taken.

"Maybe we need to look at putting bollards on the pavements or a barrier.

“I’m extremely concerned. It’s shocking to think that people are behaving like this.”

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