VIDEO: New crossing for primary school youngsters

A traffic light crossing across a busy road used by schoolchildren was unveiled today (Tuesday January 14).

Pupils at Three Bridges Primary School cross Gales Drive every day to get between the school’s two sites.

jpco-15-1-14  New crossing unveiled for Three Bridges Primary School (Pic by Jon Rigby)

jpco-15-1-14 New crossing unveiled for Three Bridges Primary School (Pic by Jon Rigby)

The school and parents have been calling for a crossing on the road since it merged its infant and junior schools in 2012.

Matt Andrews, the school’s deputy head, said: “The crossing’s absolutely vital now we are on two sites.

“The children need to cross safely so we can share resources on both sites.”

Around 200 primary school children have to cross Gales Drive every week for school assembly.

Smaller groups of children cross during the week to use the school’s playing fields on the lower site, north of Gales Drive.

Mr Andrews said parents and staff were “delighted” they no longer have to deal with the stressful road.

He said: “It was always a stressful situation for staff to cross.

“The parents are really pleased as well because it was stressful for them to cross in the morning too.”

The crossing was completed earlier than originally thought.

The school was previously told it would be finished later in 2014.

Mr Andrews thanked Cllr Bob Burgess (Con, Three Bridges) and the county council’s highways team.

He said: “Thanks to the hard work of Bob Burgess and the West Sussex Highways Team, it’s happened a lot sooner.”

Cllr Burgess, mayor of Crawley, said: “It happened remarkably quickly.

“It was a good example of identifying a need and something being done about it.

“It was good co-operative work all around.”

Cllr Peter Lamb (Lab, Northgate & Three Bridges) said the crossing was one of the first campaigns he dealt with after he was elected to office at West Sussex County Council in 2013.

Cllr Lamb said: “It was literally the first thing I did after I got into office.

“It had come up quite a lot that parents were quite concerned with the crossing with the school’s merging.

“It’s been a bit of an uphill battle.”