CAMPAIGN: Stop putting children at risk near schools

Outside St Mary's School in Fuller Street, Kettering
Outside St Mary's School in Fuller Street, Kettering
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Children starting their new academic year are being put at risk by parents parking on the yellow zig-zag lines outside our schools.

The Telegraph paid a visit to St Mary’s Primary School in Kettering at picking-up time and saw a number of cars waiting on the yellow lines.

As a new school year gets under way, the Northamptonshire Telegraph is re-launching its Park Safe, Be Safe campaign to remind parents to park responsibly.

The campaign was first launched in 2006 after reports of dangerous parking around schools by parents.

And as we start our Park Safe, Be Safe campaign, the Telegraph is asking readers to tell us which schools they think are the worst for dangerous parking.Either get in touch with the Telegraph through our Facebook page, www.facebook.com/northants.et, on Twitter at twitter.com/NTnewseditor or send an email to nt.newsdesk@northantsnews.co.uk.

Parents picking up children at St Mary’s seemed generally unhappy with others who parked on the zig-zag lines. The zig-zag lines are designed to give children a clear view when crossing the road.

Kylie York, from Stamford Road, said: “It does seem very busy. If you don’t get here at about 2.55pm then you can’t find anywhere to park. I live some distance away but I walk for that reason, because there’s nowhere to park.”

Claire Palmer, from Gardeners Crescent in Kettering, said: “A lot of people park on the pavements, so it can be difficult to get your buggy along if you have younger children.”

Lisa Goode, from Edmund Street, said: “I don’t think it is as bad as some other schools I’ve seen because a lot of parents do park further away, but some do park on the hill next to the school and it can cause problems.”

St Mary’s headteacher Jonathan Gardiner said: “We generally remind parents not to park on them in our newsletter. We also remind them that they are liable to an on-the-spot fine if they ignore the restrictions.

“We also don’t have much sympathy if they are given a fine for parking on them.”

Mr Gardiner said parents are often asked to park safely further away from the school.

He added: “At the end of the day it is for the safety of their children and it is their children who are being put at risk by the parking.”

As well as zig-zags, the school is also surrounded by streets which have double yellow lines, and some were being used as temporary parking spots while our photographer was there.Some were also temporarily stopping on the hill alongside the school while children climbed in.

Earlier this year, the Telegraph paid a visit to Hawthorn Primary School in Kettering which was experiencing similar problems.