SNOW gates have been installed to stop people travelling over the Long Mynd in dangerous conditions.

The highways department at Shropshire Council have installed the gates at all the main access routes on to the Long Mynd, Church Stretton, including on the Burway Road and at Ratlinghope.

The gates are to be closed when the road conditions are such that the ice and snow make travelling over the Long Mynd dangerous for motorists.

Over the past 20 years on average there have been at least six incidents per year when emergency services and the National Trust were called to assist motorists who have ignored weather conditions and signs placed at access points to advise visitors not to travel over the 1,695ft high hill.

Ice and snow can lie at this altitude for weeks at a time, and therefore some vehicles can be left stranded.

Dave Cowell, Long Mynd Area Ranger for the National Trust, said: “Installing the gates will help visitors and those using sat navs make a decision to use alternative routes.

"This will lessen the number of accidents and reduce the call outs to emergency services personnel who put their own lives at risk each time they are called out to these dangerous conditions to assist motorists stuck on ice or in snow.

"For those people visiting the Long Mynd the conditions can be very deceptive down in the valley where there could be hardly a flake of snow but up on the top of the Long Mynd there could be lots of snow and ice.

"Therefore if the snow gates are closed, then they are closed for a reason.”

The Highways department will make the decision on whether the snow gates are to be closed. It is then assisted locally by the National Trust in organising the closure at the Burway Road and by local residents in Ratlinghope.