POLICE are this morning still investigating a collision in Petersfield in which an elderly pedestrian lost her life.

The woman, who is yet to be identified, was using the pelican crossing on Dragon Street close to the junction with the High Street when she was in collision with a recycling lorry around 2.30pm on Monday.

The roads around Petersfield town centre were closed to traffic as medics frantically tried to save the woman's life but she was declared dead around 3.30pm.

A witness said the accident happened between the Duet shop and the residential Dolphin Court flats.

Dragon Street, St Peter's Road, The Square and the High Street were closed with traffic diverted along Sussex Road, Heath Road East and Pulens Lane, according to the police.

Concerned parents picking up children at Petersfield Infant School, on St Peter's Road, and Herne Junior School, off Love Lane, flooded the schools with calls, prompting both schools to issue text messages and e-mails as part of their safety procedure.

Worried parents of children at The Petersfield School were also caught up in the aftermath of the tragedy, with one early rumour suggesting the victim had been a pupil at the Cranford Road school.

Tony Markham, headteacher at Herne Junior School, said: "In all instances the safety of the children in the school has to be paramount. The sad news of an accident that closed part of the town filtered into the school at about 2.50pm, leading to a quick decision to keep the children in the school if they were going to meet their parents or other adults.

"So many parents were telling us that they would be delayed, so rather than sending the children into the streets where it would be uncertain that an adult would be there to meet them, we kept them safe in school and sent a text to all mobile numbers on our data records system.

"Children that indicated that they walked all the way home were allowed to leave, as they would be least affected."

More news to follow.