CAMPAIGNING pupils from Shoeburyness High School have raised £40,000 to put two zebra crossings on roads near their school.
The crossings will be put in Elm Road and Caulfield Road after the students raised concerns about the dangers posed by cars coming off the Ness Road roundabout too quickly, when they are trying to cross the road to get to school.
The nine pupils – all extended schools community ambassadors – presented their campaign and funding details to Southend Council’s traffic and parking working party meeting on March 13. Councillors gave the plan a unanimous go-ahead.
Isabelle Giles, 12 of Bishopsteignton, Shoebury, said: “We were over the moon with the decision.
“We just hope now it has a knock-on effect and they look at other dangerous issues people tell them about.
“It was a nerve-wracking experience, speaking in front of the councillors, but more because we did not want to miss anything out.”
The pupils and extended schools co-ordinator, Karen Stock, worked together in advance of the Debate Shoeburyness initiative, in which students tackle local councillors on hot topics, to raise £20,000 for a crossing in Elm Road.
The money was donated by the Safer Roads Foundation after their chairman, local businessman Michael Woodford, former boss of Olympus, was impressed by their efforts.
Councillor Tony Cox and Zulfiqar Ali, the council’s strategic highways traffic officer, attended Debate Shoeburyness in February and said that if a crossing was put in Elm Road, the same would have to be done in Caulfield Road.
Students then took on the challenge of raising another £20,000.
Mr Woodford duly obliged, donating the money for another crossing and the students took their case to the council earlier this month.
Danny Tran, 13 of Caulfield Road, Shoebury, said: “Hopefully these crossings will now not only help students, but other people who need to cross there as well.”
Mike Assenheim, independent councillor for Shoeburyness and a governor at the school, praised the children’s efforts.
He said: “I am extremely proud of the children and what they have done.
“It shows what can be achieved when people put their minds to it. I really admire them.”
No date has been set for when the crossings will be put in.