VOLUNTEERS are needed to help support the elderly and vulnerable this winter.

Established in 2011, by PCSOs Adrian Richards and Christine Taylor, Snow Angels is a joint initiative between Durham Constabulary, and organisations including Karbon Homes, council wardens and other County Durham housing associations.

In the event of heavy snow fall, Snow Angels volunteers are called on to assist in the clearing and gritting of footpaths in their local community.

Police will also be on hand to deliver essential food parcels to the vulnerable and elderly in the Chester-le-Street and Pelton areas.

This year, Karbon Homes has supplied extra salt bins at key locations across Chester-le-Street, and these bins will be identified with Snow Angel stickers, together with relevant information on how to become a volunteer.

PCSO Adrian Richards said: “We are always on the lookout for volunteers to be part of the Snow Angels team, to help and support our community through the winter months.

“We are hoping for a mild winter but now have everything in place to offer any vulnerable resident in Chester-le-Street and surrounding villages the offer of help, if needed.”

The contents of the food parcels have been donated by Batley’s Cash and Carry, which has supported the initiative for the past six years.

Assistant manager Paul Kinsleyside said: “In the event of residents becoming isolated and in need of help, Batley’s are ready to assist.

“We provide the food parcels containing essential items such as bread, milk, tinned food and anything else needed to see them through until weather conditions improve. We are more than happy to be involved in such a fantastic scheme which has in the past been invaluable to people in great need.”

The Snow Angels initiative will run until March.

Anyone wishing to volunteer should contact the Chester-le-Street Neighbourhood Policing Team on 101 or email adrian.richards@durham.pnn.police.uk or christine.taylor@durham.pnn.police.uk.