Skip to content

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

We would like to reassure you that we are closely monitoring the situation and working with the government and NHS. For guidance on Coronavirus and the latest information on the situation, visit Devon County Council’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice page.

To find out what support is available in your local community, visit our Community Support Group page.

Snow Warden Scheme

What is the Snow Warden Scheme?

In winter, we focus on salting the major routes which carry the most traffic. This sometimes means smaller communities don’t receive as much help as they would like. During times of extreme weather, through the Snow Warden Scheme we will provide advice, training and salt to community groups and parish councils who are helping each other on a voluntary basis. The Snow Warden is the key point of contact between Devon County Council (DCC) and the local community and is primarily a co-ordination role.

What does a Snow Warden do?

The Snow Warden is working on behalf of the parish council, not DCC, and will deliver winter maintenance support, determined by parish or town councils, to their communities. This includes:

  • Ordering grit supplies
  • Keeping a register of local trained volunteers
  • Receiving and responding locally to weather alerts
  • Organising and deploying volunteers to clear snow
  • Organising and deploying volunteers to spread grit when icy conditions are forecast
  • Encourage responsible use of grit/salt and help to minimise the abuse of grit/salt within communities

The Snow Warden must:

  • be nominated as suitable by the town or parish council or similar body
  • have received suitable training by DCC to carry out minor works
  • agree to work within the advice provided by the county council
  • agree to work to the parish council’s plan that has been agreed with DCC
  • be registered with DCC

What type of work can be done by the Snow Warden’s volunteer?

How to get involved

Town and parish councils: If you’re interested in joining the scheme and working with Devon County Council to more effectively manage your local area call 0345 155 1004 or email

Individual volunteers and community groups: Contact your parish or town council and offer your assistance. To get the right contact details for your area please use the postcode checker below. Alternatively contact Devon County Council on 0345 155 1004 or email

Devon County Council will provide:

  • A comprehensive winter service as defined in the Winter Service and Emergencies plan.
  • Refill county grit bins when we are made aware that they are empty.
  • Provide up to five tonnes of salt free of charge (usually in one tonne ‘dumpy bags’) to be supplied in one delivery to one parish location prior to winter and a small supply of salt bags. Quantity of salt to towns will be negotiated separately and will depend on the services that they wish to deliver, for example clearing High Streets.
  • Offer up to a further five tonnes of salt at the same time if required at £100 a tonne.
  • Provide a mechanism whereby further salt can be purchased.
  • Train Snow Wardens as part of the scheme, and provide advice and guidance as required.
  • Provide Public Liability Insurance (but not other forms of insurance cover) as identified within the scheme.

Volunteering details

When: Weekday am, weekday pm, weekends
Transport provided: No
Public transport nearby: Dependent on location of work
Disabled access: No
Training provided: Yes
Group activity: Optional
One-off opportunity: Optional
Out-of-pocket expenses paid: No

Funding and resources

DCC Winter Service Plan

Case studies

More than 250 towns and parishes in the county have snow wardens in place in case Devon is hit by prolonged severe weather. Read more >

Snow Warden

To find out more about being a Snow Warden watch this short film about Peter Smerdon, Rattery's snow warden Read more >

Parishes signed up to the Snow Warden Scheme are free to decide how they use their free salt in their area Read more >