Support has rallied for Brighton Hill headteacher Chris Edwards who revealed he’s been verbally abused by drivers over a road closure.

Hampshire County Council has issued a plea to motorists after it emerged Mr Edwards was being hounded for trying to keep children safe on their way to school.

It has been agreed by the supermarket that the road linking the two ends of the car park should be closed at the zebra crossing for 40 minutes in the morning and afternoon, to allow children entering and leaving the secondary school to do so safely.

But Mr Edwards says that he and his staff have been verbally abused by impatient motorists unwilling to take the signposted diversion - an extra journey time of six minutes - some of whom instead try and remove the barriers that he is protecting.

"It is a bit demoralising," he told The Gazette, "especially now when people realise what is going on in schools and people aren't able to make the smallest of sacrifices.

Now HCC has voiced support for Mr Edwards, with Cllr Rob Humby, deputy leader, telling The Gazette: "There is a signed diversion in place while SGN carry out gas main replacement works in Quilter Road, and I would urge all drivers to use this to ensure the safety of all pedestrians, cyclists and other drivers.

"We will, however, ask SGN to review their signage to discourage the use of the supermarket car park."

Readers have rallied round Mr Edwards, writing messages of support. 

Alison Hodgeheg said the motorists should be ashamed of themselves, writing: “The problem is completely with the motorists.

“They clearly have no respect for pedestrians, else why would the road with a pedestrian crossing need to be closed so pupils are safe? Those drivers should be ashamed.”

While David Graham wrote: “The headteacher has taken an initiative in the best interests of his pupils.

He said: “Cannot see what the problem is here. The closure has been notified in advance. I adjusted my route around the state, which takes six minutes longer.”

And Suzanne Spokes added: “Children’s safety should always come first.”

Sam Lay wrote: “Kee up the good work, Chris.”