Speeding parents, bad parking and ‘oblivious’ children all add up to an ‘accident waiting to happen’ near Waingels College, councillors have warned.

Woodley Town Council has said there have been ‘near misses’ between walkers and vehicles around the town’s schools – highlighting speeding drivers and illegal parking. It said bad parking had led to some children ‘walking in the middle of the road, putting themselves in danger'.

Linda Guttridge, a member of the council’s planning and community committee, said she feared for Waingels College students walking along Glendevon Road.

She said: “There’s an accident waiting to happen around Waingels School and along Walmer Road towards the post office and that junction with Glendevon Road.

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“Most traffic tends to go quite fast along Glendevon Road and the school kids are down Walmer Road and then straight towards the post office and the off licence to buy their sweets.

“But the kids come walking down the centre of the road taking no notice of the traffic – they’re just completely oblivious.”

Robert Horskins, another councillor, said he lived near the school and felt the ‘main speeders’ are parents rushing to drop off and pick up their children. He said drivers should remember that pedestrians are ‘the number one priority'.

He said: “It is very fast on Glendevon Road and it seems to me to be the parents late drop-off or pick-up that are the main speeders.

“I walked along there yesterday morning at twenty past eight. Tippings Lane from Hedley Road East to the junction with Duffield Road, solid traffic with people dropping their children off.”

Councillor Horskins said the solution is that more people should walk or cycle to school rather than be driven by their parents.

He noted that neighbouring Reading Borough Council operates ‘school streets’ – where roads near schools are briefly closed at the start and end of the day.

He said: “If you had something like that, you could do that on the junction of Walmer Road, you could do that on the junction of Denmark Avenue – said no entry for half an hour twice a day – that would stop it.”

But councillor June Taylor said getting children to school is a ‘logistic nightmare’ for some parents. She said the council should gather more information on the cause of the problem before trying to find a solution.

She said: “Bringing kids up these days is a logistic nightmare for parents. I used to walk my kids to school and then I used to go home. Now girls are getting in their car and off to work and it is very stressful really.”

Woodley Town councillors have also raised concerns over parking near Rivermead Primary School on Loddon Bridge Road. The town council says it wants discussions with Wokingham Borough Council to find solutions, and to ask that more is done to punish illegal parking.