Residents could be trapped by harsh winter

A PEGSWOOD resident fears he and his neighbours could be left stranded in heavy snow as the council gets tough on grit bins.

Northumberland County Council is numbering all of its grit bins across the county, as well as putting signage on them to remind people that the contents can only be used on public footpaths and highways and should not be used to salt individual drives.

But householder James Sommerville believes this will cause problems if there is extreme winter weather like last year and people could become trapped in their homes.

“I’m really annoyed that I will not be allowed to use a bit of this salt on my own drive and those of my neighbours who need support if there is more heavy snow,” he said.

“I’m worried that we could be cut off if we have to wait for the county council to come along and do some gritting.

“Last year it was two weeks before council workers came to our estate.

“Conditions will be really dangerous if the snow and ice can’t be treated with proper grit.”

However, a spokeswoman for Northumberland County Council said the policy is clear.

“We provide grit bins at selected steep hills and sharp bends, particularly those which are exposed sites where routine gritting is not carried out,” she said.

“All grit bins are being numbered so that they can be easily identified for refilling.

“Each will include a sign that advises people that they should contact the council to request a refill or report damage or misuse.

“It also points out that the salt in this bin is for use on public footpaths and highways only and should not be removed for private use.”