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Parents hit out at CCTV cameras on Middlewood Way

Parents fighting the withdrawal of a free bus service say the cameras are a waste of money

The Middlewood Way, Tytherington, Macclesfield

Parents have reacted with shock after CCTV cameras were installed along the Middlewood Way.

Council bosses have unveiled plans to scrap a free school bus after reclassifying the path as a safe route for pupils walking to Tytherington School.

But parents who are fighting the move said it was a shock to discover that three cameras had been installed on the route.

A spokesman for the council said that the cameras will collect data to allow the council to make an informed decision on the proposals.

Isla Roberts, from Ovenhouse Lane in Bollington, whose sons, Archie, 15, and Lennon, 11, attend Tytherington School, said: “I’m disgusted.

“The CCTV is a complete waste of money.”

In June Cheshire East Council bosses approved proposals to reclassify five routes to schools as ‘safe’ for students and withdraw the free bus facility.

But the final decision was delayed following objections from parents and the support of the Children and Families Scrutiny Committee, who say the route along the Middlewood Way is too dangerous for students to walk alone. The council’s cabinet is expected to discuss the matter at its next meeting on October 18.

One parent said the cameras should have been installed before a decision was made in the first place.

Heidi Reid, from Highfield Road in Bollington, whose son attends Tytherington School, said: “It’s shocking and I’m really angry as they’ve made a really serious decision regarding child safety based on no data. It doesn’t matter how many CCTV cameras there are, it doesn’t change the fact it’s an isolated route that emergency vehicles can’t reach. If a child finds themselves in trouble they can’t raise an alarm or flag down a car.”

But a spokesman for Cheshire East Council said the data collected by the cameras will enable the cabinet to make an informed decision. He said: “Three CCTV cameras have been installed on Middlewood Way, in Bollington, as a temporary measure to enable officers to gather information on the use of the route. This will ensure that the Cabinet is able to make an informed decision in response to the overview and scrutiny recommendations.”

Bollington ward councillor Amanda Stott said the cameras will not be a fair representation of the route’s use throughout the year and urged parents to attend the next meeting on the issue on October 18.

She said: “The days are still long and the evenings light but in November it’ll be a different picture. The cameras don’t provide security but purely record information.”

The matter affects around 200 children at Tytherington School and Poynton High School, and nearly 100 students at Fallibroome will lose their bus once a new crossing is installed on Prestbury Road.

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