Barking and Dagenham Council's gritting vehicles have been officially given their new names: Bobby Moore Grit, Albus Dumblethaw and The Grounding Granny, at a special ceremony held at Gascoigne Primary School today.
After months of planning, hundreds of entries, tough deliberations and nail-biting head-to-heads, two of the final three names were chosen via a series of polls on the council's Facebook and Twitter pages, while the third was selected by a panel of judges from the suggestions sent in by our schools.
The council received lots of 'grit' entries
The council was overwhelmed with the number of ‘grit’ entries submitted from over 150 local people and school pupils, with everything from local legends to tennis pros, film characters to pop stars, there was a huge array of witty, funny and imaginative entries.
But the power to pick the winners was left down to the public and after a week of tense knock-out stages, the winning names were chosen.
From Harry Potter to local legends
As well as the honour of seeing their suggestion on the front of the gritters, each of our three winners was given a family ticket to the super-cool Belowzero Ice Bar in London. One of the winners, who sent in the magical moniker ‘Albus Dumblethaw’ said she was “absolutely over the moon” to be chosen and that “knowing a gritter lorry will be driving around the streets called Albus Dumblethaw is a very nice prize.”
Councillor Syed Ghani, Cabinet Member for Public Realm, said: “We were amazed by the number of entries we received, and found it very difficult to choose our top 24.
“It was great to see so many residents taking part in the voting polls and I am pleased that we ended up with three names worthy of the fantastic job our gritters do every winter to keep Barking and Dagenham’s roads safe.”
The gritters will be out this weekend
The gritting vehicles are now ready to start gritting Barking and Dagenham’s roads once the winter weather hits, armed with their new names. The gritters are on the road throughout the night into the early hours of the morning, making sure roads are safe and free of ice. Without them, the council would struggle to keep services operating or reach the most vulnerable residents, which is why the council felt it was important to give them names worthy of the amazing job they do. They are scheduled to start gritting over the next couple of evenings, ahead of the forecast snow this weekend.
Thank you to everyone who sent in their ideas and, if you weren’t a winner this time round, keep an eye on the council's Facebook and Twitter pages for future competitions