PLANS to axe lollipop patrols in Essex have been ditched.

County Hall had proposed to stop paying for school crossing patrols to save £322,000 earlier this year, suggesting schools pay themelves.

But this week county hall backtracked.

Stephen Robinson, county councillor for Chelmsford North, was delighted. He said: “It’s been a big issue and why it was ever considered in the first place we don’t know.”

Teachers, pupils and parents across the county were united in their support of the crossing patrols - and determined to make county council transport boss Rodney Bass listen.

Mr Bass said the council’s current financial position was better than when the announcement was first made in March.

He added: “This announcement proves we listen. Representations have been made during an extended period of consultation and we have examined and analysed them.

“I can now assert that the school crossing patrols are safe in our hands.”