Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Snow warden recruitment halted in Sheffield

No further snow wardens will be trained up to help keep Sheffield moving if bad weather strikes, the city council said.

About 100 volunteers were last year equipped with grit and a snow clearing kit to clear smaller roads that the council could not get to.

They volunteered as a result of a consultation carried out following heavy snowfall in January 2010.

The council said the money which would have to be spent on training new wardens would be better used elsewhere.

'Bad weather'

Deputy council leader Bryan Lodge said: "We've got money for the winter maintenance in case it gets really bad weather but it's looking at how we can make best use of what we have.

"If we had more snow wardens out there then it takes away because of the cost of training and it depletes the resources that we do have."

The warden scheme was brought in when the council, which is now Labour-led, was under Liberal Democrat control. In January councillors praised the scheme's success and voted to expand it.

Councillor Shaffaq Mohammed, leader of the city's Lib Dem group, criticised the decision not to recruit more volunteers.

Mr Mohammed, who is a snow warden, said: "When I was doing my bit for Sheffield last year we had between 15 and 20 people come out with their own shovels and actually start clearing the roads.

"So in a sense it's not just one individual, it's empowering the entire community. What this council has done is just pulled the plug and said 'no more'."

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