High Peak MP calls on councils to end standoff over new grit bins for Buxton

As winter closes in and road safety concerns rise, two councils are being urged to end a standoff and extend Buxton’s supplies of grit.

By Ed Dingwall
Thursday, 18th November 2021, 6:31 pm

As the highways authority, the county has legal duties to ensure the safety of roads and footpaths in winter, but at present that only stretches as far as installing new grit bins – organisations such as parish and town councils are required to fund, maintain and refill them.

Buxton has no such local body, so the demand has fallen on High Peak Borough Council but it has so far declined to take on the task.

Leader Anthony Mckeown said: “In 2015, a working group put a proposal to DCC that for unparished areas, where a need was established, HPBC would purchase grit bins as long as DCC would take on responsibility for filling them.

A woman collects grit from a grit bin as she walks her dogs in Tintwistle. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)

“Unfortunately this proposal has not been accepted nor any alternative arrangements put forward by DCC.”

Now MP Robert Largan has taken up the cause, saying residents in areas like Carr Road are anxious for a solution to the stalemate.

He said: “I have been contacted by lots of residents recently in Buxton, asking me to urge the council to install new grit bins as we approach the winter months.

“The current standoff means that residents are left in the lurch. I am calling on the councils to get a grip on grit, and end this situation.”

Mr Largan has launched a petition to pressure both authorities, though each has already indicated a willingness to break the deadlock

Coun Mckeown said: “We are happy to work with colleagues at DCC to try and identify a resolution that is sustainable to both parties, where DCC wishes to delegate its responsibilities.”

A spokesperson for Derbyshire County Council said: “We own and maintain more than 800 grit bins across the county but we're unable to provide additional bins in new locations. A further 1,250 bins are in the ownership of town or parish councils who may consider providing a new bin where it would provide specific benefits for their local residents.

“We will talk to High Peak Borough Council to see if we can find a way to work together to provide new grit bins in the areas in Buxton and Glossop without a town or parish council.”

To sign the petition go to https://bit.ly/3nrmDiT.

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