South Marston School: Serious Incident

Copyright by Stacy WoolhouseConcerns have repeatedly been raised and communicated to parents and carers about parking at the front of the school at the start and end of the school day, the speed of some vehicles and the potential for a serious incident involving one of our pupils.

Regrettably on Friday 1st March at the end of the school day a car, which had pupils on board, overtook cars which had come to a stop to let a family cross the road. The overtaking car narrowly missed one of the young children in that family. At least one of the drivers of the stationary cars made every effort to warn the family by using their horn and we would like to thank them for this.

Additionally since the start of this year the problems of cars parking at the front of the school making it dangerous for pupils who need to cross the road safely has reached the point where the Police have had to attend on more than one occasion. Their observation of the situation and of the speed of cars in the vicinity of the school so concerned them that they followed this up and intend to continue to do so.

20 mph residential area speed limit warning
20 mph residential area speed limit warning (Photo credit: freefotouk)

At the most recent meeting of the Governing Body of the school it was decided that the school will actively work with all the authorities to reduce the risk of a serious accident involving one of our pupils occurring. We are going to again petition for the introduction of a 20 mph speed limit having originally written to Swindon Borough Council about this in June 2012. We will call on the Police as is necessary and are now asking EVERY parent, family member or carer to work with us to tackle the most obvious issues.


Please drive as you would want and expect others to do if it was your child crossing the road, crossing the entry to the car park, walking through the car park or walking to school on pathways that are part of the road.

  • Do not park, pull up to drop off or pick up anywhere along either side of the road in front of the school’s front fence.
  • Do use the car park, alongside the school or the car park at the hotel.
  • Do drive with due care and consideration for others. The speed limit is the absolute maximum. It doesn’t mean that it is safe to drive at this speed in all conditions.
  • Please take note of the increased danger zones around the village car park exit/entry point and the blind bend towards Pound Corner.
  • Please reduce your speed when approaching and leaving the school via Pound Corner and the Mercure Hotel.

We do appreciate that the majority of families and carers are not only concerned about the safety of their own children but also about the safety of other pupils, unfortunately the actions of a few have made it necessary for this notice to be sent out.

Careless parking and speed, particularly when combined with impatience can cause serious injury and death, when this involves a child it devastates families and school communities so please do all that you can to help us make the journey to and from school safe for all South Marston pupils.


To reinforce the point regarding not parking ‘along either side of the road in front of the school’s front fence’, the residents who are impacted by the school drop-offs have reiterated that parents should not park in the private drives near the school, as it blocks their access, and adds to the chance of an accident.

3 thoughts on “South Marston School: Serious Incident”

  1. One of the issues of using the school car park is the poor access to the far end of it, which effectively limits the capacity of the car park, and reduces peoples willingness to use it. Would it be possible to remove the fencing there to make it into one continuous car park?

    1. As a further enhancement, if you make the car park into a single entity, would it also make sense to make it double ended? You can then make the car park more of a circular drop off zone, with slower cars moving, and keeping the main road clear.

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