[ Snow in The Ridgway – click on any of the photos on this site to see them full size ]
The cold weather and snow in December was a massive challenge for the gritting teams of Sutton Council. As your local Councillors, we received many enquiries concerning the gritting of particular roads. We were in frequent contact with the gritting teams.
While it is inevitable that there will be roads that have not been gritted as frequently as some residents would like, the gritting teams made heroic efforts. We would like to pay particular credit to duty manager Mick Carter and his team. Mick and his team worked virtually round the clock, getting home in the early hours of the morning, during the snowy weather. We alerted Mick to a request from some elderly residents at Hampton Lodge, a block of flats for people aged over 60 and where some residents are over 90, in Cavendish Road, in Sutton South Ward. After a strenous evening gritting, a gritting machine arrived at Hampton Lodge at 1.30 in the morning. It was found that the machine was too large to get through the gates of Hampton Lodge so the driver backed the vehicle in as far as it could go and spread as much grit as possible, before putting down a mass of grit on the pavement and the road outside, so that when people left the premises they would be walking on a secure surface. Well done! Mick was still working at almost 4am when he emailed Councillor Honour to tell her what had been done. Councillor Honour said to Mick “on behalf of myself, Richard Clifton and the residents of South Sutton Ward can I say a big thank you to you and all your team. The fact that you were working at 3.56am shows the grit and determination of the whole team.”
[ The gritting team with Councillors Honour and Clifton. Team members Mateus Malczuk, Lee Hunt, Graham Murray and Mick Carter are in the picture. The other member team member is Przemyseaw Szczygiel. ]
Priority is given to the main and through roads, and to roads used by buses. This meant that for most of the period of snowfall the “hail and ride” “S” buses continued to run through Sutton South Ward, though the S4 was suspended for a short period by the bus company.
The new grit bins at many locations in Sutton South Ward, and the Council’s arrangements for distributing grit, came just in time and helped.
Please note that the story that you could be sued if you cleared the snow from the front of your house and then someone slipped when the area iced over again, is a complete urban myth. There is no record of anyone being successfully sued in these circumstances. We want to encourge everyone in Sutton South to consider clearing the pavement in front of their house, if able to do this (not everyone can and please don’t take risks if it’s too much hard labour in the cold), as their contribution to “The Big Society”.
Please get in touch with us if there is anything you want the Council to do if the cold and snowy weather returns.
[ Gritting takes place in the early hours. This picture was taken in The Ridgway]