Call to recruit lollipop crossing patrols to help ensure little ones arrive at school safely

Crossing patrols are being recruited.
Crossing patrols are being recruited.

People are needed to help ensure children get to and from school safely.

Council chiefs are struggling to fill vacancies for lollipop crossing patrols with two positions currently up for grabs.

The first is a fixed term contract covering long term sick leave in Hillgrounds Road, Kempston, and the other is a permanent position in Wootton.

Both jobs will start at the beginning of the new school year in September.

The starting pay rate is £7.21 but this is supplemented to pay the living wage of £7.85. The fixed term position offers 10 hours per week while the permanent position is seven hours and five minutes.

Bedford Borough Council road safety and transport quality team leader Andrew McGrorey said: “The majority of school crossing patrols don’t just do it for the money though. They are part of the community and are viewed by young and old as playing a worthwhile and vital role within the community. They build great relationships with the people they cross on a regular basis and many of our current patrols are crossing second and in one case third generations with parents and grandparents remembering with affection when they were crossed by the same patrol.

“Several of my patrols tell me that it gives them a reason to get up in the morning, being out in the fresh air and the interaction with the children and their parents help to keep them ‘young’.”

There are also four standby positions available. Candidates will need to have their own transport and be willing to cover any of the 19 crossing patrol sites that currently operate in Bedford Borough.

Standby patrols are paid the same hourly rate as regular patrols and are reimbursed for travel time and expenses.

Andrew said: “Although thought of by many as something a semi-retired person undertakes, approximately one third of our current team are well below retirement age and they do the job because it fits in with other part time employment and or family life.”

To find out more contact the school crossing patrol organiser in the road safety team on 01234 228336.