Cold December weather - a summary of the council's work


Temperatures fell to -7C during Tuesday's rush hour and Oxfordshire County Council sent the gritters out twice on Monday night in advance

All 25 of the council's gritters  hit the road having been kept very busy throughout the whole of the weekend - including five runs between 3am on Sunday and 3am on Monday.

One gritting run covers all A-roads, B-roads and some C-roads amounting to 1200 miles - the equivalent of London to Iceland.

Oxfordshire County Council's gritters operate from our three depots in Woodcote, Drayton and Deddington.

What happened to counter Sunday's snow

Gritters with snowploughs attached were in operation in Oxfordshire throughout Sunday, December 10 to tackle the heavy snowfall that has hit the county, neighbouring counties and other parts of England and Wales.

Over the 24 hours from 3am on Sunday to 3am on Monday the gritters covered more than 6,000 miles of Oxfordshire road and used 1200 tonnes of salt.

Work continuing to take place in the cold

  • On both Monday and Tuesday the council had crews in Oxfordshire's town centres putting down grit on pavements. There'll be more of that today

  • Gritters have been operating beyond their normal routes this morning to grit and snowplough. They have also been re-visiting previoulsy gritted routes to treat icy spots.  They have visited Fifield, Burford (Witney Street), the road from the A361 to Wigginton past the local wildfowl sanctury, Thorpe Way Industrial Estate in Banbury, Botley Estate and Oxford Parkway. They have also visited the B480 Stonor; B4026 Charlbury to Chipping Norton, B4031 Iron Down Hill (Deddington to A361) and A415 Witney to Standlake.

Libraries and Household Waste Recycling Centres

Any service changes on Tuesday will be reported here. 


Schools make their own judgements based about whether they will close during snowy/icy weather conditions. The county council has collated the statistics on school closures

On Tuesday 53 schools were closed, 20 are part open and 222 Open (two schools have yet to notify us)

A total of 266 schools were closed, 27 were open and 3 partially open on Monday.

Keeping the main roads open

Paul Wilson, the council’s winter operations manager, said:  “The aim remains keeping our main road network clear. We watch the forecast intently respond accordingly. Fixing the snowploughs to the gritters is not something that we have to do very often in Oxfordshire and we can often go a full winter without it needing to happen. Indeed it is a number of years since we've had to use the snowploughs. There was a clear case on Sunday.

“Gritting and snowploughing helps keep the main roads clear but it doesn't turn December in to July. As ever we would ask people to drive very carefully in these Winter conditions. These are exceptionally cold conditions. We were active during Tuesday treating icy spots on previously gritted routes and beyond. ”

The A34, A43 and M40 are the responsibility of Highways England.

Learn more about our winter gritting operation here via the words of our experienced gritter driver Dave Primrose from Banbury.

Schools post here if they ever have to close due to the weather or for any other reasons.