Schools : Lollipop man resigned ‘because council told him high-fiving children could be considered grooming’

Lollipop man, 77, quits after council ordered him to stop high-fiving children ‘because it could be seen as grooming’

-Bryan Broom, 77, shocked parents and pupils after deciding to hang up his hi-viz

-Council stopped him high-fiving children in case it was interpreted as grooming

-He left Friday and was showered with gifts and hugs from devastated children

-East Riding of Yorkshire Council said they received complaints about Mr Broom

A lollipop man has resigned from his job after the council told him he could no longer high-five children because it could be seen as grooming .

Bryan Broom, 77, said that he loved his job but he could no longer work in a world where he would constantly have to watch his ‘Ps and Qs’.

He slammed the ‘political correctness creeping into society’ but thanked ‘the ordinary people’ who came to his defence and requested that he continue in his role.

The respected and much-loved lollipop man left yesterday after 20 years in the job during an emotional afternoon and was showered with gifts and hugs from devastated children who urged him not to leave, the Hull Daily Mail reports.

Bryan’s resignation came after complaints were made about him high-fiving youngsters as they left Kirk Ella St Andrew’s Community Primary School in west Hull.

And now, Bryan has revealed why he made the tough decision to quit doing the job he loved after almost two decades.

He said: “I used to high-five the kids until I was told it could be construed as grooming – that is what the council told me.

“It’s rather peculiar because two or three months ago there were pictures of the Duchess of Cambridge high-fiving at a school and I should have sent copies of those to the council.

“If it was good enough for the royal family why is it not good enough for me?

“If I carried on I would feel so frustrated that I would have to watch my Ps and Qs all the time.

“I wouldn’t know how to talk to people because I am a rather outgoing person.

“Maybe I do say some things wrong but generally I do, I think, a pretty good job.

“It makes me feel sad and I thought if this is what is happening to the world I don’t want to be a part of this.”

Since news of Bryan’s resignation broke among parents, mums have leaped to his defence and slammed those who have complained to the council about his behaviour as “pathetic” and “ridiculous.”

East Riding of Yorkshire Council has said that investigations were launched after complaints were made about Bryan’s conduct.

However, none of these were upheld.

In a statement, the council said: “The council had received a number of complaints from parents from parents about the behaviour of Mr Broom.

“These complaints were investigated but not upheld. Mr Broom is choosing to leave of his own accord and we wish him well in the future.”

Bryan condemned those who made complaints against him and slammed the perceived “political correctness” creeping into society, but was thankful for the support he received from many well-wishers.

“It means so much to me,” he said. “It proves that the majority of people are not into this political correctness and that they are the same as me.

“The ordinary people have come to my defence.

“This political correctness has been perpetuated by a small minority of people and in the last couple of days, the majority has proved to me that Mr and Mrs Ordinary are wonderful people and they don’t want this political correctness.”

After waving his lollipop stick for the last time on Friday, Bryan now plans to take a break by going on holiday for a week.

However, he expressed his pride and gratitude to those who showed up on his final day to give him the perfect send-off.

“It has been fantastic,” Bryan said. “I expected a bit of a fuss but it’s gone viral and I love it.

“I’ve had chocolate, gin, wine – you name it, and I’ve had some really nice messages from children saying ‘please don’t go.’

“It’s been wonderful and I feel so humbled that people think so fondly of me.”

And councils requesting lollipop men to stop high-fiving children is not unique to Hull.

Schoolchidren in Stockport were asked to stop high-fiving lollipop man Colin Spencer, 83, because the council believed it would be a ‘distraction’ from his duties and a disturbance on the roads.

A text to parents of children at St George’s Primary School in Heaviley, read: “Please may we ask that children using the Bramhall Lane crossing patrol do not ‘high-five’ Colin when crossing the road. Thank you.”

So what do you think?

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