A ban stopping an 83-year-old lollipop man from high-fiving schoolchildren over safety concerns has been lifted.
Stockport Council hit the headlines when it ordered Colin Spencer to stop high-fiving the kids as they crossed the road to “concentrate on ensuring highway safety”.
Spencer has worked as the lollipop man at St George’s Primary School in Stockport for 14 years.
However, after making the national news and generating widespread interest, the council has now apologised and admitted it was “clearly wrong” to impose the ban.
Parents had described how they received a text message from the school asking them to tell their children not to high-five Mr Spencer on the road. A text the following morning said children could in fact high-five their Lollipop man, but only on the pavement.
In interviews since the story broke, Mr Spencer said the decision had left some pupils in tears and unable to understand why he could no longer high-five them in the road.
The council’s latest statement said: “Following the recent reports surrounding Stockport Council’s lollipop man, Colin Spencer, we want to apologise for the unnecessary concern caused by the issuing of an instruction that was clearly wrong.”
Sheila Bailey, the council’s executive member for communities and housing, added: “Colin has been an outstanding public servant and a popular member of his community for many years.
“It’s fantastic that he works with a smile on his face and brightens up the day for so many children.”
Ms Bailey added: “We try to make the service as safe as possible as well as maintaining the unique personalities that each member of the team brings to their school. We are sorry, that on this occasion, the council got it wrong.”
Dawn St Clare, whose children go to the school, told the BBC last week she thought the ruling was “ridiculous” and had annoyed parents and upset pupils.