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News, Outside MAN

Tributes pour in for popular lollipop man from Strathaven

A popular lollipop man from Strathaven has died following a long illness.

Robert Baxter – who manned the Low Waters Road junction for Woodside Primary – sadly passed away in hospital on Sunday, May 3.

The 80-year-old had served the school as their crossing patroller for nine years, but was forced to take a step back after taking unwell in May last year.

He had previously spent 15 years working as the janitor at Strathaven Academy.

His proud daughter Lesley said: “We were immensely proud of dad and know how well loved he was in the local community in and around Woodside Primary School and School Street, where he lived happily with mum.

“We feel it only right that people should know about his passing.

“Dad never actually retired and was still working at 79-years old as a school crossing patroller – only forced to take time off after taking unwell last year.

“He loved his job and made a point of learning everyone’s name that he helped cross, both children and adults alike.

“He firmly believed this was key to not only helping the children develop their road safety but in maintaining a sense of wellbeing within the community.

“If it hadn’t been for illness he would still be working to this day. He will be deeply missed.”

Robert’s heartbroken wife Alice added: “On behalf of our family we would like to thank Co-op Funeral Services in Hamilton, Ward 13 at University Hospital Hairmyres, Lloyds Pharmacy on Low Waters Road, Hamilton and Portland Park Medical Centre for all their care and support over the last year.

“We thank everyone in the local community for their kind words also.”

Woodside Primary’s head teacher Elaine Renwick was saddened to hear of his passing and paid tribute the “much-loved” lollipop man.

She said: “Woodside Primary are very sorry to hear of the sad passing of our school lollipop man, Mr Baxter.

“Mr Baxter was much-loved by the local community and ensured our children made it safely to and from school for many years.

“He will be sadly missed.

“Our thoughts are with his family at this sad time.”

He is survived by wife Alice, children Jackie, William and Lesley, five grandchildren and his twin sister Marie Findlay, also of Hamilton.

His funeral will take place at South Lanarkshire Crematorium on Tuesday, May 19, at 11am for immediate family only due to COVID-19.

The family regret that unfortunately due to these restrictions there will be no open service prior to the crematorium.

His funeral cortege will leave from the family home in School Street, Hamilton, at 10.40am.

Should anyone wish to pay their respects the family ask that people do so from afar within School Street with safety and restrictions in mind maintaining the two-metre social distancing guidelines.

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