A mother has been barred from a Staffordshire primary school after leading a parent's revolt against a ban on sugary drinks and snacks.

Bernadette Finnegan, 48, was told by authorities at Abbey Hulton primary school that she was banned from entering the premises after they consulted with lawyers.

Mother of three Finnegan is leading a protest against a school-wide ban on sugary food items such as cakes, chocolate bars and fizzy drinks. She says parents should decide what goes in their child's packed lunch.

According to Finnegan, senior staff had arranged to meet with pupils' parents on Wednesday, but cancelled at the last moment and failed to organise another the following day.

The school's healthy eating guidelines suggests parents cut out junk food in packed lunches and use healthier options instead, including fresh fruit and yogurt. However, many parents are resisting this advice and say the school is discriminating against them.

"I phoned up on Tuesday morning and they said the headteacher was off site so I rang back in the afternoon and got told that she was in a meeting. Just after 1.30pm I received a text from the school saying I was banned", Finnegan told The Sentinel.

"I am not really afraid of the ban because if anything it is making me more determined to fight for the rights of the children.

"The school has singled me out but that is fine because I do not want other people getting in trouble for my battle.

"Things have been different picking up and dropping off my two children but most parents are backing me.

"This story has been the talk of the town. I was sent a photo this morning saying that I was on the front page and when I was shopping in Tesco someone stopped me because they recognised me and said that I was doing the right thing.

"Now I am just going to wait for the letter to come and see where things go but I will not give up. When I received the text I was devastated but I can live with it."

Bernadette has two children studying at the school; 11-year-old Caitlin, 11, who is in Year 6 and Callum,9, in Year 5.

"I'll have to wait by the gates and Caitlin and Callum will have to come to me. Callum was diagnosed with autism two weeks ago and I'm worried that this might throw him a little", she added.

A Stoke-on-Trent City Council spokesman said: "We would always hope that schools and parents can resolve disputes amicably. As an employer we do not tolerate the abuse or intimidation of our staff."