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Sheffield supermarkets ban schoolchildren after rise in thefts and antisocial behaviour

Ecclesfield School.
Ecclesfield School.
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A furious parent has labelled the decision by a Sheffield supermarket to ban pupils from one of the city's schools as 'ludicrous'.

Andrew Kemp said Asda's decision to cut down on pupils from Ecclesfield School in its Chapeltown store was tarnishing all pupils with the same brush.

Mr Kemp, whose two daughters - 12 and 16 - both go to the school, said: "My daughter and her friend went into the store to go and collect a card a balloon for another of their friends. They were in the store and walking down the aisles when they were asked to leave.

"My daughter was quite upset by it because she has done nothing wrong. There were no notices anywhere saying Ecclesfield School pupils weren't allowed in. It's just a ludicrous decision."

An Asda spokesman said while it hadn't issued a complete ban on pupils from the school, it had introduced 'measures' to manage large groups of schoolchildren visiting its Chapeltown store.

But Mr Kemp disputed that and said: "When they say it's large groups that have been banned - that is just a lie. On one occasion my daughter was with her friend and got asked to leave and on another it was both my daughters.

He added: "As far as I'm concerned Ecclesfield School is a very good school with some notable former pupils. It's got roughly 1,800 pupils and there are a handful of them that are causing the security staff at Asda a few issues.

"But my daughters are being painted with the same brush as people who steal, vandalise and intimidate other shoppers. It's just unacceptable - my daughters are none of them."

Mr Kemp added: "Where does it stop? If one pensioner steals something are they going to ban all those aged 65 and over?"

Morrisons said it had also banned pupils from the school from entering its store on The Common between 8am and 5pm unless accompanied by an adult.

A spokesman for the supermarket chain said: "After a number of incidents of antisocial behaviour and theft, the store manager met with the headteacher and welfare officer of the school. It was agreed that pupils would not be permitted to enter the store between 8am and 5pm unless accompanied by an adult.

"The measure has already been in place six months."