Around 50 ‘lollipop’ men and women from across Cornwall have celebrated the 60th anniversary of the county’s school crossing patrol service.

Badges and certificates were presented to CORMAC’s patrol staff during the event which featured speakers from Devon and Cornwall Police as well as CORMAC’s Highways Division and Engineering Design Group.

Among those who attended the celebration were Cornwall’s longest serving crossing patrols, Margaret Bray from Hayle and Kaye Ellis from St Stephen, who have been with the service for 33 years and 25 years respectively.

Margaret, who helps children crossing the road at Penpol Junior and Infant School at Hayle, said: “I've been helping children cross the road for 28 years and really enjoy it - you see them growing up and then their children crossing with me.”

Kaye, who helps children from St Stephen Churchtown Primary School cross a busy road at Creakavose, said: “I really enjoy the job. The children always cheer me up and they know I am there to help them.”

The first patrols in Cornwall were provided in 1953 at Redruth, Falmouth and Goonhavern after legislation was passed making it an offence to fail to stop for a school crossing patrol. Cornwall’s patrols were originally equipped with heavy wooden boards for signs and white canvas dustcoats for visibility and were paid 2/7d an hour, the equivalent of 13 pence an hour in today’s money.

Today, on behalf of Cornwall Council, CORMAC Solutions Ltd provide patrols at 116 sites throughout Cornwall, backed up by 12 relief patrols who provide cover for emergency absences. Cornwall’s team of crossing patrols play a valuable role in ensuring young children can cross the road to school safely.

Interested in becoming a school crossing patrol? Call Sandra Webber on 01872 327886