CHILDREN have been banned from bringing broomsticks to a Halloween party because of health and safety fears.

Langham Pre-school announced it was barring brooms from its annual Pumpkin Party on Sunday after a child was hurt last year.

The fancy-dress party has been running at the village’s community centre for more than six years and is the nursery’s main fundraiser, attracting about 100 children and their families.

But this year committee members decided to officially ban play broomsticks and devil forks for health and safety reasons.

John Smith, committee chairman and a primary school headteacher, said: “It was not a whim, it was a considered decision.

“Last year, a child brought a full-size broomstick and another child got hurt.

“It’s common practice when you have children running round you don’t have broomsticks or forks."

But Sally Cowley, a 39-year-old mother-of-two, who runs Boxted mother and toddler group, said: “I think it’s sad it has come to this.

“It’s the same as banning conkers.

“I think we need to really think sensibly about things before we ban them, rather than being pushed into doing something because someone says something might happen.”

A spokesman for the Pre-school Learning Alliance added: “Banning broomsticks at a Halloween party, however well-meaning, is taking health and safety a little to the extreme.”