Warwickshire County Council unveils newly-named gritters - The Leamington Observer

Warwickshire County Council unveils newly-named gritters

THE DESIGNS of Warwickshire County Council’s newly-named gritters have finally been unveiled.

Following a naming competition earlier in the winter, WCC has provided new images for each of the imaginatively-named gritters which had recently joined the county’s fleet. The rules were simple – be creative, be original and be funny. And the Warwickshire public did not disappoint, with hundreds of suggestions coming in by email, by telephone and across social media channels.

Following a judging process the names selected for Warwickshire’s new gritters were:

– Usain Salt

– Professor Chris Gritty

– Gritta Thunberg

– Snowbi-Gone Kenobi

– The Mighty Thaw

– Charlie Boy

– Grey13 Hero

– Ice Maiden

Two of the names chosen were particularly poignant and have also received their own unique decal images: Charlie Boy is named in memory of Charlie Round, a little boy from Nuneaton who sadly lost his battle with a rare form of childhood cancer in 2019. Charlie is remembered as a little boy who, despite facing incredible adversity, lit the world around him with an amazing smile and outlook.

Grey13 Hero is named in memory of Jack Mitchell (John Arthur Mitchell) and was put forward by his daughter, Alison Mitchell. Jack worked for Warwickshire County Council for over 50 years, including on the county’s gritting fleet at a time the service was carried out by shovelling the grit off the back of a truck as it went along Warwickshire’s essential routes. Grey13 was Jack’s call sign from his time working on the gritters.

Warwickshire residents are now encouraged to report sightings of the new gritters in action via social media.

WCC transport spokesman Jeff Clarke, Warwickshire County Council said: “On behalf of the council I would like to offer thanks to all our residents who suggested names for our new gritters.

“One of the things to have come out of the pandemic has been a massive increase in the engagement with residents and the council on social media. This naming scheme has really benefited – without it, we may never have heard about the stories of Charlie and Jack which would have been a shame as we were only too happy to help with a suitable tribute.

“Our gritting fleet in Warwickshire does a fantastic job keeping the network running smoothly across the winter months. The five new gritters joining the fleet are a welcome addition to our efforts as a council of ensuring residents are supported by excellent transport infrastructure.

“Our newest gritters have been selected based on their low emissions so that we are keeping our commitment to doing all that we can, within our business, of reducing our carbon footprint and minimise our impact on climate change.”

Every time the slippy roads require gritting, the fleet treats approximately 1,100 miles of carriageway over 29 different routes. The average number of times there is a requirement to treat roads is approximately 60 per year, so it is in the region of 66,000 miles per annum travelled by Warwickshire gritters – or about three times round the entire planet!

The county holds around 14,000 tonnes of salt in stock across five depots at the start of winter and in an average winter it will get through around 12,000 tonnes. Salt stocks are kept topped up in case of prolonged spells of cold and icy weather.


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