Putting Big Society into action: Be a snow angel

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COULD you be a ‘Snow Saviour?

With wintry weather rapidly approaching, Bucks County Council is looking to compile a list of people with four-wheel-drive vehicles who would be willing to volunteer to help reach vulnerable people in the case of heavy snowfalls.

During last year’s heavy snow, some home carers had difficulty reaching vulnerable people, despite superhuman effort, said Trevor Boyd, head of commissioning for adult social care.

He said: “Our staff thought nothing of walking when driving wasn’t possible, to provide much-needed care and support to vulnerable people,

“But we could do so much more, and much more quickly, if we had the help of volunteers with four-wheel-drive vehicles.”

Even if you don’t have a vehicle, you can still be a snow saviour by volunteering to help clear paths at the homes of vulnerable people.

Cabinet member for community engagement Martin Phillips said: “It’s a Big Society ask, and we know our county has so many community-spirited people who’d be so willing to help our vulnerable people during the winter.”

And he added that government advice issued last winter should allay any concerns volunteers might have about clearing snow.

“The most important thing to remember is you won’t be in trouble for clearing snow sensibly,” he said.

Anyone who can volunteer should call the county council’s localities team on 01296 383409 or email locality-services@buckscc.gov.uk with your name, where you live, contact details and whether you can help with snow clearance or whether you have a 4x4 vehicle.

Gritting lorries are always a welcome sight as the weather gets worse, and schools across the county have helped Transport for Bucks (TfB) prepare its fleet for winter – by naming all the gritting vehicles.

Each of the 25 gritters has a unique name, suggested by schools, and will be able to be tracked travelling around the county during the winter.

The 25 names were chosen from 416 suggested by 45 schools which entered the competition.

Names include ‘Salty’, suggested by St Michael’s School, Stewkley, and Betty, suggested by Whitchurch Combined School, along with Alfie The Grit, Margrit, Frostbite and Mr Sprinkle.