A political row has broken out over the future of the district’s lollipop men and women.

Bradford Council is reviewing its school crossing patrol service, and opposition Conservative councillors say they are worried this means some patrols could be axed.

Councillor Roger L’Amie, Conservative group spokesman for children, said: “I am calling upon Coun Ralph Berry to publicly confirm that his review of school crossing patrol provision throughout the district will not lead to the removal of these much valued and needed public servants.”

In response, Councillor Ralph Berry, who oversees children’s services, has insisted the review was not a cost-cutting measure, and accused the Tories of scaremongering.

Earlier this month, campaign group Living Streets said across the country, two-thirds of local authorities had reduced the number of school crossing patrols.

Coun L’Amie said he hoped the same would not happen here.

He said: “Roads do not cease being dangerous and accidents will not cease happening because Coun Berry is doing a review and I want to see all crossing patrols maintained despite, throughout and beyond Coun Berry’s review.”

Coun Berry called this “irresponsible, ill-informed speculation”.

He said: “I’m frankly shocked and appalled at Coun L’Amie’s conduct here. There are no cuts to the budget, there has been no reduction to the number of patrols. When the results of the review are in, I need to have a look and see what it will be and he will see it as well.”

Coun Berry said the review was predominantly aimed at trying to solve the difficulty in recruiting new staff to the roles, and whether they could be combined with jobs such as school lunchtime supervisors.

Liberal Democrat leader Councillor Jeanette Sunderland said: “I think the Conservatives have jumped on the back of a national bandwagon.”

The number of school crossing patrols employed in the Bradford district has stayed at either 100 or 101 for the past three years.

There are 19 job vacancies, for patrols at Maningham Lane in Bradford, Harewood Street in Bradford Moor, Barkerend Road in Bradford Moor, Harrogate Road in Eccleshill, Victoria Road in Eccleshill, Town Lane in Idle, Killinghall Road in Bradford Moor, Leeds Road in Windhill, Allerton Road in Allerton, Cottingley Road in Thornton, Thornton Road in Clayton, Green Lane in Manningham, Bradford Road in Keighley, Park Lane in Keighley, Devonshire Street in Keighley, Haworth Relief Road in the Worth Valley, Mornington Road in Bingley, Nessfield Drive in Keighley and West Lane in Baildon.