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Alan hangs up his lollipop for good

A LOLLIPOP man has seen his last pedestrian across the road after 11 years of service.


Alan Johnson, 82, who has been on duty outside Aldingbourne Primary School for more than a decade, retired at Easter.


Children celebrated and thanked Mr Johnson at a special assembly held at the school on Thursday, March 29, for his commitment in all weathers.


Mr Johnson, who has lived in the village since 1965, said: “I will definitely miss the banter with everyone.


“We all know one another and have a good gossip in the morning. Even many of the cars that drive past toot their horns or wave at me.


“People cross the road and then ask me about the weather and all sorts. We laugh and say I am the pavement information centre!


“I have been in voluntary service in the village ever since I moved here and I will carry on doing various things to keep busy.


“I have been a chairman, a vice-chairman, started up clubs, raised money, all sorts! I will have plenty to do.


“My father got me in to volunteering from a young age, saying it was good to get some young blood in the system helping out.”


Mr Johnson has also been involved with search and rescue teams in and around West Sussex.
he said: “I have been part of about 100 searches for missing people all across West Sussex, parts of Kent, Hampshire and Surrey, and we won the Queen’s Award for our search work in 2014. I am also part of the West Downs Neighbourhood Watch Task Force.”


Mr Johnson says he will still be getting up early, commenting: “I used to be a farmer as well so I have always been an early bird. It doesn’t matter to me at all.


“The traffic has definitely grown from 11 years ago.


“I would say I get about 2,000 cars going past me in the time I am here in the mornings.


“I have really enjoyed working for such a lovely school, I will miss everyone terribly.”

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