Another Chance To Get Free Grit From Wandsworth Council

Town Hall will supply bags on Friday 2nd December between 4-7pm

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For general advice about clearing ice from footpaths and to find the location of your nearest salt bin visit

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Members of the public have another opportunity to pick up free bags of grit from the council’s depot in Wandsworth this week as the borough prepares for icy weather this winter.  So far the council has already given away just under 13 tonnes of free grit to residents.

More than 250 people have already collected up to 50 kilos of grit - enabling them to treat pavements and footpaths in their neighbourhoods if there is snow and ice this winter.

Residents who have missed out before now are being given another chance this Friday, December 2. Anyone who turns up at the depot in Dormay Street between 4pm and 7pm, with proof that they are a resident of the borough, will also be able to claim their free 50 kilos.

The idea behind the scheme is to encourage people to help others in their community - especially the elderly and disabled, or those with young children who may find it hazardous venturing outdoors in a cold snap.

Transport spokesman Cllr Russell King said:
"So far this idea has proved incredibly popular with nearly 13 tonnes of grit claimed by people who want to be good neighbours in their community.  These residents will know what is best for their neighbourhoods. They will now which bits of pavement are the most treacherous in icy weather and they will also know the people living in their streets who are most in need of having their paths cleared.

"This is a perfect demonstration of what the Big Society is all about and how it can offer an effective and practical remedy to specific issues.  In previous cold spells local people have consistently told us they are willing to clear paths in their neighbourhoods. This is where our initiative comes in. By making salt and grit freely available, we want to work with local people so that together we can clear snow and ice away more quickly."

The council is also supplying bags of grit to the borough's 200 neighbourhood watch co-ordinators and has also expanded the number of salt bins across the borough so that members of the public also have an immediate stock of grit close at hand.

There are now 55 of these salt bins located around the borough, situated mainly in elevated and hilly areas where icy pavements can be particularly treacherous. These will be refilled regularly whenever there is ice on pavements and roads. 

When snow falls the council's fleet of gritting trucks work non-stop around the clock to grit roads and footpaths. But with nearly 230 miles of road surface and 450 miles of pavements in Wandsworth, this is a huge task that always takes time to complete - especially if there is more than one fall of snow or then icy spell is prolonged.

When snow has fallen, the council's main priority is to keep the borough's main roads clear of ice so that the emergency services and public transport can keep running. Smaller residential roads are gritted afterwards. 

The borough's 450 miles of pavements and footpaths must be treated by hand which is a labour intensive and time consuming process. However particular attention is always paid to entrances outside tube and railway stations, hospitals, OAP day centres, schools, care homes, clinics and nurseries.

Snow scene from 2010/2011

The gritting of borough red routes and their adjoining pavements is managed by Transport for London - these include the A3, A24, A205, A214, A306, A3205 and A3220

The council's depot in Dormay Street is just off Armoury Way in the Wandsworth one-way system. For drivers with sat-nav - the postcode is SW18 1EY.

November 7, 2011