Sub zero heroes - battling against the odds

PUBLISHED: 16:00 14 January 2010 | UPDATED: 11:34 25 May 2010

Molly Ford and her daughter Yvonne Jefferies. Yvonne was driven from Bristol to Worlebury by police so she could be with dad when he died.15 Cliff Road, WsM

Molly Ford and her daughter Yvonne Jefferies. Yvonne was driven from Bristol to Worlebury by police so she could be with dad when he died.15 Cliff Road, WsM 11-1-10

Copyright Archant Ltd

WORKERS across North Somerset battled the snow and hail - going above and beyond the call of duty.

Gritting the roads in Bleadon - Mick, Bruce, Sarah, Phil, Paul (holding Millie) and Dave.

WORKERS across North Somerset battled the snow and hail - going above and beyond the call of duty.

There are tales from across the district of people trudging through the elements to help vulnerable people or get into work.

Communities pulled together to assist each other, despite temperatures dropping to as low as minus eight degrees centigrade.

Hospicecare workers battled through the snow.

OFFICERS from Avon and Somerset Police gave a lift to the daughter of a dying man so she could be by his side when he died.

Michael Ford was at his home in Worlebury and was slowly dying - after suffering from a stroke in March.

His daughter Yvonne Jefferies and her husband Alan, from Southmead in Bristol, rang the police switchboard on Friday to find out the best way to get to Michael - as she was concerned about driving in the snow.

Yvonne, aged 57, said: "The next thing we knew we had a phone call from Amesbury Police Station in Wiltshire saying someone would pick us up from the house.

"We were taken to Amesbury and a policeman driving to Taunton in a 4x4 said he would take us on his way.

"Often the police don't get enough recognition, but we were amazed.

"We desperately wanted to get to Worlebury for my mum, Molly, and to be with my dad when he passed away."

Michael, who was known as Mick, died aged 81. He had suffered a stroke in early 2009 and had had a difficult 10 months.

Yvonne and Molly were also astounded by the dedication of the district nurses and carers from Care UK who walked from their homes to Michael's house in Cliff Road in the snow.

Molly added: "Everybody has been so supportive. I couldn't have had better help from anyone.

"I want to say a big thank you to everyone as they were absolutely superb."

*YVONNE has now written a letter of thanks to the two policemen who drove her - George Clark and Simon Harris.

A KIND-HEARTED AA rescue worker helped shovel snow and clear the way for elderly pensioners in Bleadon.

Finding no grit left in the North Somerset Council bins, Paul Leather hopped over the border to Sedgemoor and stole grit to clear Purn Road.

The notorious stretch of road is steep and populated by a lot of elderly people - some of whom had been cut off for four days.

Paul, his daughter Millie and his wife Sarah, were joined by several other residents in helping to clear the road.

IN BANWELL, community leaders went beyond the call of duty to help stranded elderly residents get to their doctors.

Councillor Nigel Green cleared driveways and grit roads to assist patients getting to their appointments last Wednesday.

JUNIOR doctors from Bristol were taken to Weston General Hospital in 4x4s during the snow.

The staff members were asked if they could make it to Bristol Royal Infirmary and were then driven by the ambulance service to Weston.

About eight junior doctors, who were a mix of surgical and medical staff, were brought in to help out in the snow.

A hospital spokesman said: "We didn't need to cancel any operations - the only ones that didn't go ahead were the ones patients cancelled themselves.

"There was only one clinic that wasn't running during the heavy snow last week, and that was because a consultant couldn't get in.

"We have had several members of staff walking up to four-and-a-half miles to get into work, which really shows their dedication."

WESTON Hospicecare was also astounded at the dedication of its staff.

Pictured are members of the community team walking into work on January 6.

AN IT company in North Somerset helped nurses in Herefordshire by driving them around in 4x4s.

Blagdon-based ITS Feda managing director Keith Watts, who lives in Herefordshire, ferried around members of his home's primary care trust to reach rural patients.

ITS Feda's own offices were closed due to the snow, but staff were able to use remote technology to work from home.

A CARE worker employed by Crossroads Care has been dubbed a 'sub-zero hero' by a client living on Bleadon Hill.

Betty, who is a member of the care team for Weston's Graham Road-based service battled eight miles to get from her home in Wick St Lawrence to her client's home.

Having negotiated much of the route by car, she was forced to abandon her car near The Catherine's Inn in Bleadon before continuing on foot.

The grateful client said: "I couldn't believe it when I looked out of the window and saw her walking up the drive, covered from head to foot in snow.

"The weather was absolutely appalling and as we live right at the top of Bleadon Hill, we are always cut off by snow.

"I can't begin to tell you how pleased I was to see her. These people are angels.

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