In the Guardian piece, Mr Halfpenny says "It was a child who actually asked if they could wear goggles". This, however, is not what was reported at the time. The BBC covered the story by quoting Mr Halfpenny as saying "I said they would have to wear goggles to play, mainly because they could get bits of conker in the eye. They thought it was a great idea."The Cumberland News also reported that "Mr Halfpenny said he had no choice because of health and safety rules...'The children asked to play conkers in school and I thought it would be really mean if I said no. These days you cannot be too careful, especially when health and safety inspectors are watching.'"
"What are they doing?" "They're playing conkers, without wearing goggles." "Fuck it, that's too dangerous. We're going in."
The thing that really baffles me about this Guardian piece though is that after having kids wear goggles, Mr Halfpenny then went to the media and told them about it. The "Health and Safety has gone completely over the top" attitude was well underway by then, as shown by this article by Jeremy Clarkson. How the Head didn't realise that the story was going to run and run is frankly, remarkable. It seems in this case, the Head didn't use his, well, head.