Britain’s longest-serving lollipop lady finally hangs up after more than 50 years

Britain’s longest-serving lollipop lady hangs up her stick after crossing the road more than a million times in an incredible 52-year career.

The devoted Ann Perry, 78, has decided to retire after more than half a century of patrolling the same stretch of road since 1969.

In recent decades she is estimated to have traveled more than 3,700 miles safely escorting children to and from Kingsbury School, near Tamworth, Staffordshire.

Ann, who is married to retired builder Bob, 82, started the job at age 26 when her two children, Elaine and Robert, started at the school.

The devoted Ann Perry, 78, has decided to retire after more than half a century of patrolling the same stretch of road since 1969

Since then she had seen other students grow up and have children of her own, but now she is retiring so that she can spend more time with her family.

Grandmother of three Ann, from Kingsbury, Warwickshire, said: ‘My best memories at work were watching the children grow up and have children of my own, which I also enjoyed crossing over.

“I loved making them laugh and remembering their names. They made me smile every day and I will miss that the most.

“Now I look forward to spending more time with my family and husband.”

Every school day, Ann walked a quarter of a mile from home to make the morning crossing from 8:15 AM to 9:00 AM and in the afternoon from 3:00 PM to 3:30 PM.

In recent decades she is estimated to have traveled more than 3,700 miles safely escorting children to and from Kingsbury School, near Tamworth, Staffordshire.

In recent decades she is estimated to have traveled more than 3,700 miles safely escorting children to and from Kingsbury School, near Tamworth, Staffordshire.

Ann, who is married to retired builder Bob, 82, started the job at age 26 when her two children, Elaine and Robert, started at the school.

Ann, who is married to retired builder Bob, 82, started the job at age 26 when her two children, Elaine and Robert, started at the school.

She added: ‘It’s the best job in the world. I just loved meeting people and watching the kids grow up.

“They were always polite, saying ‘good morning’ and ‘thank you’ when crossing the road.

“The work has remained the same, but there is now more traffic, so the roads are more dangerous.

“I shouldn’t really give up my secrets, but it’s important to keep warm because you’re out in all weathers.

Since then she had seen other students grow up and have children of her own, but now she is retiring so she can spend more time with her family

Since then she had seen other students grow up and have children of her own, but now she is retiring so she can spend more time with her family

Grandmother of three Ann, from Kingsbury, Warwickshire, said her favorite memories at work are how the kids grow up and have children alone

Grandmother of three Ann, from Kingsbury, Warwickshire, said her favorite memories at work are how the kids grow up and have children alone

“I’ve been using hand warmers and small hot water bottles in my pockets.”

Ann’s granddaughter Morgan Perry, 24, of Baddesley Ensor, Warwickshire, said the Covid-19 pandemic had made her grandmother rethink what was important in her life.

She added: ‘It’s something she’s loved doing for over 50 years, but she’s had to make the heartbreaking decision to finish it.

“I don’t believe it was directly related to Covid, but it made her realize that life is fragile and she wants to spend more of it with her family.

“We as a family are very proud of her selflessness and kindness, she inspires us to get better and we are immensely grateful for her guidance and love.

“My grandmother would like to say a huge thank you to all the children and parents she crossed over and will miss them all very much.

Ann's granddaughter Morgan Perry, 24, of Baddesley Ensor, Warwickshire, said the Covid-19 pandemic had made her grandmother rethink what was important in her life

Ann’s granddaughter Morgan Perry, 24, of Baddesley Ensor, Warwickshire, said the Covid-19 pandemic had made her grandmother rethink what was important in her life

Morgan added: 'We as a family are very proud of her selflessness and kindness, she inspires us to get better and we are immensely grateful for her guidance and love'

Morgan added: ‘We as a family are very proud of her selflessness and kindness, she inspires us to get better and we are immensely grateful for her guidance and love’

“Looks forward to seeing them in the village.”

Celebrating her 50th milestone in 2019, Kingsbury School Headteacher Martin Clarke said: ‘As a school, it’s important that our students don’t take Ann for granted.

“We wanted to take the time to pay tribute and thank her for protecting all of our students.”

Rosalie Taylor, Supervisor School Patrol Officer at Warwickshire County Council, said: ‘I’m sure many adults who remember Ann and all the children will agree that she is a very special person with a real passion for the job.

“Standing in any weather is no easy task, but Ann has always done it with a smile on her face and a dedication to keeping young people safe on their journey to school.”

Ann, who works outside in all weathers, says she uses hand warmers and small hot water bottles to keep her hands warm in the colder months

Ann, who works outside in all weathers, says she uses hand warmers and small hot water bottles to keep her hands warm in the colder months

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