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New pupils face 'dangerous' walk to school route

New pupils face 'dangerous' walk to school route

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 5:03pm 21st August 2019.

There are fears more children will face a 'dangerous' walk in north Cornwall as they start school.

Free bus travel was scrapped for kids over 11-years-old who live in Delabole and attend Sir James Smith's in Camelford.

It is because they live just under three miles away, which is the cap on free school transport provided by Cornwall Council.

But the route they have to walk to school is described as "dangerous" with no pavements, no street lighting and little phone signal.

delabole school walking route

Pirate FM told you how parents campaigned and took the issue to the ombudsman which sparked a review.

The problem was resolved for existing students at the school, and they were given their free passes again as no changes had been phased in.

But now the new pupils starting in September face the same problem, as they will not qualify for free bus travel.

One of those will be Rachael Prideaux's daughter.

delabole walk to school

"It's three miles down a narrow unlit winding lane, it's pitch black, it's misty and icy in the winter.

"There are long stretches of the road that traffic can't even pass a pedestrian at all.

"We're going to keep on fighting, she won't be walking it, my partner works and I don't have the vehicle all the time so I'm unable to get her there.

"The council wouldn't send their own child or grandchild down that road, so why send ours?"

Rachael Prideaux, mum

delabole school walking route

The Council says that the route is suitable for school pedestrian use and parents are told how they can appeal.

"Where a walking route to school has been assessed as being suitable for school pedestrian use in line with the Council's Pedestrian Route Assessment Policy, there is no entitlement to free transport, unless other eligibility criteria is met.  

"Where requests for transport are refused, parents are informed of their right of appeal.  

"In addition, where spare seats are available on vehicles contracted for school use, the parents of children who are not eligible for free transport can pay for their child to travel."

Cornwall Council

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