Village to put its own gritters on the road?

Gary Croxford who wants Sutton Bridge to have gritters. SG120613-226TW
Gary Croxford who wants Sutton Bridge to have gritters. SG120613-226TW

A village may put its own 
gritters on the road to keep people on the move in the worst winters.

Towable, hopper-style gritters could be used on estates and side roads in Sutton Bridge if the parish council sanctions the plan at a meeting next month.

The idea has come from parish councillor Gary Croxford, who says the county council grits only the A17, Bridge Road and sometimes New Road – and that means other village roads remain tough to negotiate in snow and ice.

Coun Croxford said: “It’s still in its early stages. We have to look at the insurance aspects – for the volunteers and vehicles – but I believe it’s something that could make a difference to the community.

“The gritters range from about £2,000 upwards – they are basically like a little hopper that’s sat on a small trailer.”

The salt spread can range from 1.5 metres to five metres.

Coun Croxford says the plan would be de-railed if the insurance costs are prohibitive, but he hopes they will prove to be affordable.

He said: “I would like to hope this is something we could put in place.”

Coun Croxford also hopes volunteers from some of the local farms will step forward to help with the gritting.

The councillor passed around photographs of the gritters at the parish council meeting last week and members agreed to debate the plan at their next meeting when he has explored the costs.

Parish council chairman John Grimwood said he believes parish councils will be made “more and more responsible” for things like gritting as time goes by.

Coun Croxford told him: “It’s an opportunity to maybe be a bit ahead of the game.”

The council heard the gritters could be used by vehicles as small as a quad bike and treat pavements as well as roads.

Coun Croxford told the meeting he hopes something could be put in place by the end of this winter or for the start of next winter.

Fellow councillor Jenny Rowe said: “It’s worth looking at it.”

l Lincolnshire County Council grits some 1,869 miles of the county’s A and B roads and manages the operation from a nerve-centre in Lincoln known as “the Snow Room”.

For this year it has invested a new type of snow plough which scrapes more snow off the roads.

The rubber-coated, ceramic-tipped blades can go right down to the tarmac without damaging the road surface.

The authority has 43 gritters which can be fitted with snow ploughs.