More than 1,000 people have signed a petition fighting plans to scrap free school buses for hundreds of students.

The petition was started after council bosses approved proposals to reclassify five walking routes to school as ‘safe’ and withdraw access to free buses, despite parents claims the routes are too dangerous for children.

Manny Botwe, headteacher at Tytherington School, is among those leading the campaign against the closures in Macclesfield.

He says the Middlewood Way, which more than 200 students at Tytherington School and Poynton High School would be expected to use, is too isolated and dangerous, and the council should look to make savings elsewhere.

He is urging more people to sign the petition against the ruling, and encouraging parents and supporters to attend a public meeting at 6pm on Monday, July 4, at Tytherington High School.

He said: “The petition news is great and indicates the strength of feeling about the issue. We’re having this meeting and then next week we want to get the council decision makers together.

“It’s absolutely vital to make our voices heard so our children can get to school safely.”

A meeting at the Cock and Pheasant pub in Bollington will also take place tonight (Wednesday, June 29) at 6pm.

The Cabinet voted on June 14 to reclassify five routes to schools for a total of 500 students from April 2017. Nearly 100 pupils at Fallibroome will also lose their bus service after council bosses approved £80,000 plans to install a controlled crossing on Prestbury Road, and schools in Willaston and Wheelock will also be affected.

In a statement to the Express following the announcement, Coun Liz Durham, cabinet member for children and families said: “On the grounds of fairness to all parents and pupils, these measures are the right thing to do. While it will undoubtedly prove unpopular with the people affected, this decision is about fairly applying an existing policy, now that these walking routes have been made available.”

The Children and Families Overview Scrutiny Committee, a team of councillors who do not sit on the cabinet, will meet to analyse and make recommendations on the decision on July 19.

Sign the petition at