Spread Sheeran, Gritter Garbo – what name will you give Suffolk’s gritter lorries?
PUBLISHED: 05:30 31 May 2019
Suffolk’s fleet of gritting lorries are set to roll onto the streets of the county with personalised names next winter, after youngsters were given the chance to name the trucks.
Suffolk Highways launched the competition at the Suffolk Show allowing families the chance to put forward name suggestions for the county's 41-strong fleet.
Dozens of suggestions were put forward, with the team now set to go back to the office and choose the best.
Come next winter, the selected names will appear on the side of each gritter, along with the name of the person who came up with the winning suggestions.
Highways cabinet member Mary Evans said: "We really value the work of gritting teams, and it can be quite a lonely job.
"People will encourage the gritter drivers as they go past, so there's that familiarity with what they do.
"We are involving children to give us the chance to teach them about road safety, and we are hoping to take gritters round to the schools and talk about all aspects of road safety."
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Plenty of suggestions have been put forward for 'Gritty McGritface' in a nod to the high profile ship naming competition by the National Environment Research Council in 2016 where 'Boaty McBoatface' was the most popular name.
Other suggestions include Spread Sheeran, Spready Mercury, Gritty Woman and Gritter Garbo.
The names of the successful winners are set to be unveiled later this year.
Mrs Evans said: "The children really love it. To say they have named a gritter is really nice for them.
"It personalises the service because we are so grateful when they are out in the worst weather."
Many of the gritter drivers are volunteers with day jobs, who give up their evenings to keep the county's key routes salted and drivers safe during the winter.
Suffolk Highways is also continuing to look for volunteers for gritting runs, as well as farmers or tractor owners who can be on standby during the worst of the snowy weather to help clear roads.
More volunteers also helps lessen the workload for those already helping on the roads.
Anyone interested in putting their name forward or finding out more can email email@example.com or visit the Suffolk Highways website.