POLICE have been forced to start patrolling areas outside several schools after “inconsiderate” parking has forced children into busy traffic.

This, officers - as well as local councillors - say, is due to cars being parked on double yellow lines and across pavements, giving children no other alternative than to walk into the roads.

Hampshire Constabulary says the patrols, which are taking place in Fair Oak, have resulted in tickets being dished out, with some drivers refusing to budge.

A spokesperson added: “On one occasion, our officers engaged with a member of the public who had parked illegally causing pedestrians and school children to have to walk into the road.

“The driver was spoken to and refused to move the vehicle and was given a ticket for obstructing the public pathway.

“We are continuing to work with Eastleigh Borough Council and local schools to address any further issues.”

Officers confirmed that cars obstructing the pavement is a matter for them, but controlling parking over double yellow lines is down to the council.

A council spokesperson said: “We do our best to carry out enforcement but obviously we do not have the resource to visit all schools every day.

“We would remind all parents to park considerately and responsibly when picking up and dropping off their children.“

One councillor has suggested a “drop-off zone” could be the solution.

Nicholas Couldrey said: “There is a fair amount of inconsiderate parking by parents dropping or collecting children from the schools which is most disruptive for residents. But many parents need to drop their children and get to work. They cant take the extra time needed to walk their children to school and get back to collect their cars. The solution is a drop off zone.”

Nearby King’s School, one of the schools being patrolled, has seen a reduction in available parking space as new developments have been built in the area.

Headteacher Heather Bowden said: “We are well aware of the parking issues that have been exacerbated by new housing.

“We have been working with the developers, police, Eastleigh council and our parents to alleviate problems that have arisen with the reduction of space available.

“In common with many schools, we seek to keep disruption to our neighbours to a minimum and ensure safety of all concerned.”