Falmouth Town Council told primary school parents it was unable to pay for their lollipop lady.

The crossing at King Charles Primary School on Western Terrace has been funded by a private donor since Cornwall Council stopped paying for it in 2017.

That private funding will come to an end in July next year. 

The town council sympathised with parents but said that the lollipop lady's salary should be Cornwall Council's responsibility.

On Monday members of the parent teacher association attended a meeting of the council's Finance and General Purposes Committee to ask if it would consider footing the £3,000-a-year bill.

Sean Stratton, a parent of two children at the school, spoke to councillors about the need for the crossing.

He said: "The AA says over a third of schoolchildren hit by cars are accompanied by an adult. You may be asking why aren't the parents controlling children?

"Often you've got one steaming ahead, one dragging behind, you're trying to be in two places at once. Unfortunately there are times where we're not fully in control of the children going to and from school.

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"Children naturally gravitate towards the lollipop lady. She keeps children at her side while often out-of-breath parents catch up with them.

"It's also worth noting that nursery children and parents are big users of her service.

"King Charles is currently the largest primary school in Falmouth with around 400 children concentrated in an area smaller than a rugby pitch and surrounded by busy roads.

"Over a three-year period I personally have noticed near-weekly accidents where Florence Terrace and Albany Road meet. Most are minor but also unreported.

"I ask you please to consider taking over the funding of King Charles' lollipop lady."

Councillor Bob O'Shea, the committee's chair, sympathised with parents but said that it would "open the floodgates" to other schools in the area asking for funding.

He suggested that the parent teacher association should ask all parents to split the cost between them, saying "it's a very small amount of money for all those parents."

He proposed that the council was unable to provide the money, which was carried after a vote.

Afterwards, councillor O'Shea said: "I'm honestly sorry that we can't help."