Gosport school withdraws from Hampshire County Council's school streets trial
AN INFANT school has withdrawn from a scheme that stops cars from parking outside at the start and end of the day.
In August, Alverstoke Infant School in Gosport was selected as one of three schools to take part in a school streets pilot in Hampshire.
The school streets initiative sees stewards close the road a school is on from 8.15am to 9am and 2.30pm to 3.30pm.
But as Hampshire County Council moved this week to extend the trial, the infant school was confirmed to have pulled out of the pilot scheme.
Conservative councillor for Bridgemary, Cllr Stephen Philpott, said: 'I was disappointed to see that Alverstoke infant School had to pull out of the scheme.
'It's a shame - but I do agree that this [extending the pilot] is an excellent idea and we should continue with it.'
The county council reported that schools have 'found it difficult' to free up staff and get volunteers for the closures.
Harrison Primary School in Fareham and Cadland Primary School in Holbury are the other two schools in the trial, which was set to end after October half-term.
The extension was agreed at the executive member for highways operations' decision day yesterday, with Cllr Russell Oppenheimer adding that the cabinet will examine the trial early next year.
So far, the scheme has seen cross-party support, with politicians saying that school streets would be good for the environment while also making the walk to school safer.
Liberal Democrat spokesman for economy, transport and environment, Cllr Martin Tod, said: 'I know there is a lot of interest in this scheme across the county, and other places are keen to see them implemented.
'We definitely need to keep the schemes running - the worst possible approach would be to switch things on and off again, because we can keep learning and be open to making things better, which is important.
'The only other request I would have is that we are ready to expand quickly if we think we have got it right.'
Alverstoke Infant School has been contacted by the Local Democracy Reporting Service for comment.
Portsmouth City Council is also running the school streets trial, with Bramble Infants and St Jude’s in Old Portsmouth among those taking part.