Anti-speeding signs go up outside city primary school to protect ‘paramount’ pupil safety

Headteacher Douglas Brawley with  Lib Dem Councillor Lynne Stagg outside Copnor Primary School Picture:  Malcolm Wells (180220)
Headteacher Douglas Brawley with Lib Dem Councillor Lynne Stagg outside Copnor Primary School Picture: Malcolm Wells (180220)
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TEACHERS have installed a pair of automated traffic signs in a bid to crack down on speeding outside their school.

Bosses at Copnor Primary School hope the two new solar-powered devices will ensure greater safety for their 650-strong pupil roster.

Douglas Brawley, headteacher with (right) Lib Dem Councillor Lynne Stagg outside the Copnor Primary School 'on the very busy Copnor Road, Portsmouth, Hampshire where automated maximum speed advisory signs have been installed ''Picture by:  Malcolm Wells

Douglas Brawley, headteacher with (right) Lib Dem Councillor Lynne Stagg outside the Copnor Primary School 'on the very busy Copnor Road, Portsmouth, Hampshire where automated maximum speed advisory signs have been installed ''Picture by: Malcolm Wells

Located at opposite ends of Copnor Road – and the school’s busy pelican crossing – the LED displays flash, automatically alerting drivers when they are travelling faster than 20mph.

The signals were placed by Portsmouth City Council firm Colas on Monday, after months of pressure from Liberal Democrat councillor for Baffins, Lynne Stagg.

A governor at Copnor Primary School for the past six years, Cllr Stagg said: ‘I live just round the corner and I see so often drivers trying to beat the lights – they want to get through before it turns red.

‘As a school with just under 700 pupils, some of whom are as young as four, the crossing area outside gets very busy.

‘And with that danger in mind, we raised the possibility of getting these signs installed about a year ago.

‘We’re really pleased they’re here now and hopefully we can make this area far safer for children.’

The traffic measures have also been praised by the school’s headteacher of 14 years, Doug Brawley, who said his pupils’ safety is and will always be ‘absolutely paramount’.

Mr Brawley said: ‘I’m very grateful to Portsmouth City Council for these signs.

‘This is a super example of a governor proactively getting something done to help the children.

‘Their safety – which remains absolutely paramount to us, equal with their education – will be improved as a result.’

In addition to the new installation, the head said he is hoping to dip into the school’s coffers to recruit a crossing patrol warden.

Mr Brawley said: ‘I would like to think the new lights will be effective, but having a warden will only do more to make this area safer.

‘We’ve been in talks with Portsmouth City Council and they’re being supportive in helping us to recruit someone.

‘To have a warden on board by Easter would be fantastic, but it could take slightly longer.’

The changes follow a number of accidents in Copnor Road, including a rush-hour crash reported in November.