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Chippy calls cops after teachers act like bouncers stopping kids buying food

One of the shopkeepers speaks to a member of staff who patrols the streets near Cotham School (Picture: SWNS)

A takeaway owner rang police after he said children were not being allowed into his shop by school staff.

Pupils at Cotham school in Bristol have been told they are not allowed to go into several shops.

He said he has seen a significant drop in business after teachers, dressed in high-viz jackets, blocked the entrances and gave children detentions.

Neil D’Souza, owner of Chilli Bellies, said: ‘They came in the shop and started telling off the children who were in there, handing out detentions, demanding that they leave.

‘I’d taken the children’s money, their food was almost ready. I said I’d had enough and asked this teacher to leave, to get out of my business, get off my property.

The teachers patrol the streets in high viz jackets and threaten pupils with detentions (Picture: SWNS)
Local businesses like Chilli Bellies say they have been badly affected by the ban (Picture: SWNS)

‘He argued with me, and then went and stood right on the doorstep. He was physically blocking the entrance.

‘They were intimidating the students, and this was intimidating to my normal customers too. He refused to move, that’s why I called the police.

‘I’ve worked hard to build up my business. I’m not sure what will happen if they continue with [the ban]. It’s quite frustrating, I’ve done nothing wrong and the kids really like the food.’

Local resident Kate Grant also tried to enter the shop – and also challenged the teachers.

She said: ‘You’ve got two senior teachers in high-vis jackets standing outside a shop like bouncers.

Anyone who goes into Tuck News or other shops along the parade could be given a detention (Picture: SWNS)
Neil D’Souza called police after pupils were blocked from entering his takeaway (Picture: SWNS)
Jabir Shar, pictured with Mr D’Souza, said that he may have to close his business (Picture: SWNS)
The school denied pupils were banned from using the shops for their own safety and to disperse them (Picture: SWNS)

‘This is after school, with the kids on their way home. Young people have a hard enough time as it is. This is ridiculous.’

The school denied that teachers went inside, but admitted that staff ‘supervise the parade of shops’.

They claim they are using powers given to schools by Michael Gove in 2011 allowing them to rule over conduct of children in certain circumstances outside the school gates.

They insist it is for pupils’ safety and to disperse them.

Bobby Sehdev, owner of Monika’s convenience store, berated the children and Jabir Shar, owner of newsagents Tuck News, said business had fallen so far that he could be forced to close.

He said: ‘They are misleading the children and parents. I have had parents come in and ask why their children are not allowed in here, they have been told we don’t want them in.

Pupils are not allowed to use the shops between 2.45pm and 3.15pm on school days (Picture: SWNS)

‘We are a business and would like to carry on serving them. This has been going on for more than 20 days and I’m losing hundreds of pounds a day.

‘If this continues I’m not sure I’ll be able to remain open. They have a teacher standing outside which makes our other customers suspicious about what’s going on.’

Mr D’Souza spoke to the headteacher about the ban. He said: ‘I sat and listened, and she gave me a lecture about how what I was serving people was unhealthy food. To me, it was all about her idea of unhealthy food.

School business manager Allison Crossland: ‘We supervise the parade of shops there and all the way from the school to the bottom of Nine Tree Hill, it isn’t just these shops.

‘It is only for half an hour from 2.45pm to 3.15pm, and it is done to ensure the safety of children on their way home from school.

‘We have 1,600 pupils, and 400 of them come out of school and come this way and head towards Stokes Croft and on into St Paul’s.’

The school has a ban on using shops along Nine Tree Hill in Bristol (Picture: SWNS)

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