Parents from Irlam and Cadishead are calling for a direct school bus service to bring their children to school “safely and on time”.
A petition set up three days ago for a school bus to be routed from Irlam and Cadishead to Culcheth High School had already received 137 signatures at the time of writing.
Craig Havern said: “My son is in the school and it’s a nightmare. There used to be a bus but due to costs it’s been scrapped.”
A school bus is currently running from Warrington and Hollins Green to Culcheth High. That means children from Irlam and Cadishead need to take the 100 bus to Hollins Green before catching the school bus from there.
Mr Havern said: “If the 100 bus is late, they miss the school bus. A taxi is between 9 and 15 pounds depending where you live, and that’s one way.”
The school said they have not yet been approached about the petition. They said: “We have had no direct contact from the petition organiser. This is required before considering any options that can be discussed regarding school transport for students from the Irlam area.”
Culcheth High school is a comprehensive school and currently caters for 1165 pupils. It was rated “Good” by Ofsted at its last inspection in 2017. It is located in a rural area, about 6 miles West of Irlam station.
A view of Culcheth High School
On the petition homepage, Kay Nuttall wrote: “It’s dark, it’s cold and as parents we want to know our kids are arriving to school safely and on time.”
Mr Havern added: “My personal view is that there should be a bus route for the general public and then the children have more choice to get to school.”
Currently, it takes between 30 minutes and 1h21 to go from Irlam to the school by public transport, according to the time of day, and there is no direct route.
Getting from Irlam to Culcheth High on public transport:
Government guidance on school transport provision states that local authorities have to ensure children can get to school safely. For secondary-school age, transport should be provided when the children live further than 3 miles away from the school. Transport provision can include, for example, a bus pass to use public transport or a school bus service. The total journey time should not exceed 75 minutes.