AN INITIATIVE has been launched to encourage residents and businesses in Uckfield to work with council staff and gritters to help keep their town moving if there is a repeat of last winter’s snowy conditions.
While the County Council’s gritters will work to keep the main roads clear so that people can get into and around Uckfield and Wealden District Council’s teams keep car parks open and safe for businesses and the public, Uckfield’s Chamber of Commerce is encouraging local shops to help by clearing the pavements outside their stores.
Chamber President Peter Gale, of Swindells Accounting, said: “Everyone benefits from the pavements being clear of snow - customers can get to the shops safely and traders get the benefit of the business they bring.”
But extra help is needed to make pavements safe around other important local services. Uckfield Town Council is appealing for volunteers to help its grounds staff clear roads and pavements so residents can access essential services like GPs’ surgeries and the hospital.
Town Mayor John Carvey said: “We have a great community spirit here in Uckfield. In past years Uckfielders have rallied round to help each other and themselves during the winter. What we’re doing here is providing equipment and co-ordinating their efforts to help make sure people can get to where they need to go. When we get cut off, we need to get going with our own efforts rather than waiting for help to come from outside the town.”
The scheme is co-ordinated by the Wealden Local Strategic Partnership and it’s hoped other towns and parishes across Wealden will make similar preparations for winter.
Wealden corporate services cabinet member Cllr Claire Dowling said: “I’m delighted to see this scheme being piloted in Uckfield.”