Chaos as blizzards strike London: Millions face nightmare journey to work after some areas are hit by several inches of snow on the coldest night in seven years – with lows of -15.4C
- Met Office issues ‘amber warning’ for Home Counties with ‘potential risk to life’ alert ahead of more snow
- Motorists battle chaotic conditions in South West England with 200 vehicles stranded on A30 in Cornwall
- Highways England urged motorists to ‘take care when driving’ routes affected including A38, A39 and M5
- Met Office confirms coldest night of the year last night with thermometers plunging to -15.4C in Braemer
- * Taken any photos of snow in Britain today? Please email [email protected] with their location *
- * Have you been caught up in the travel chaos? Please email [email protected] and images to [email protected] with their location *
Swathes of Britain are crippled today after ‘doomsday’ snow caused chaos across southern England with some areas getting up to ten inches overnight on the coldest night in Britain for seven years.
The Met Office has issued an amber warning that carries a ‘potential risk to life’ with more extreme snowfall expected in the Home Counties and West Country until lunchtime, cutting off towns and villages.
The overnight lowest temperature was -15.4C (4.3F) in the Aberdeenshire village of Braemar – making it the coldest night in seven years, since the -15.6C (3.9F) observed on February 11, 2012 at Holbeach in Lincolnshire.
Around 12 hours of snowfall – the heaviest in England this winter – knocked out power for around 1,000 homes in and around Southampton. Flights across the south were cancelled, including from London Heathrow.
Bournemouth Airport and Bristol Airport were shut with rail lines closed as blizzards battered the UK. Snowfall and icy conditions will cause widespread travel disruption this morning after temperatures plummeted.
In Devon and Cornwall, hundreds of motorists blocked roads after abandoning their vehicles following the arrival of ‘snowbomb’ – but the sea of cars, lorries and vans meant gritters and emergency vehicles failed to get through.
On the A30 crossing Bodmin Moor, more than 100 people were stuck in their cars for ten hours. Some slept inside their vehicles while others made it to the famous Jamaica Inn pub where they spent the night on makeshift beds.
Dominic Burton, 20, was among the stranded and said: ‘It’s like doomsday here, like a zombie movie. I have just passed around 200 cars trying to go southbound on the A30.’
Snow makes driving treacherous today with this crash in Hampstead, North London, exemplifying the dangerous conditions
More than 100 cars were stuck or abandoned on the A30 through Bodmin in Cornwall overnight as the snow came down
A cyclist rides through a blizzard in Maida Vale, West London, this morning as large parts of the UK are deluged with snow
MailOnline readers in Bracknell (left) and in Bradley Stoke, Bristol, (right) reveal the blanket of snow covering the country
easyJet planes on the Tarmac at Gatwick Airport today as snow caused major travel disruption
An extraordinary image of Jupiter, Venus and the moon lined up in the early morning sky in a phenomenon known as a conjunction in Derbyshire’s Peak District near Buxton today
Snow settles on Gold Hill, in Shaftesbury, Dorset, – famous for its use in the Hovis ‘baker’s boy’ advert in 1973
Clayfield Copse looks like a winter wonderland after the blanketing of snow in Berkshire today
The rare sight of snow on the beach in Brighton next to its famous pier greeted the Brighton Swimming Club this morning
A cyclist rides through Queen’s Square in Bristol as some don’t take a snow day and head to work in freezing conditions
Police deal with an accident in the Glynn Valley, Cornwall, today – but emergency vehicles were hampered by abandoned cars
Bristol Airport was paralysed by snow today and is set to be closed down for the morning while they clear the runway
Drivers trapped on the A30 in Cornwall (left) last night as snow settled. Also pictured (right): Snow in Somerset overnight
A car was flipped onto its roof in Plymouth overnight while motorists reported roads being ‘like an ice rink’ across the country
Homeless tents covered in snow in Brighton today as temperatures plummeted again overnight last night
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At least 400 students were stranded at Callywith College in Bodmin because school buses could not get there. Teachers and canteen staff stayed the night and a supermarket donated £800 of blankets, duvets and pillows.
What’s the travel situation on the roads, rails and airports in Britain today?
- Dorking and Horsham: Train fault and crew shortage
- Petersfield and Guildford: Broken down train
- Swansea and Shrewsbury: Timetable changes due to snow
- Bellgrove and Glasgow: Severe weather
- Weybridge and Earlsfield: Overrunning engineering works
- Truro and Falmouth Docks: Rail repairs
- Lichfield Trent Valley and Tamworth: Overhead wires damage
- Portsmouth Harbour and Fratton: Points failure
- Watford Junction and London Euston: Severe weather
- Gospel Oak and Barking: Severe weather
- London Underground, Jubilee line: Train fault
- A1(M) northbound within J63: Congestion
- A19 southbound between A179 and A689: Congestion
- A30 westbound between A395 and A389 near Bodmin (east): Snow
- A30 eastbound between A38 and A389 near Bodmin (east): Snow
- A38 northbound between B600 and M1: Congestion
- A38 eastbound between A30 and A390 near Liskeard (west): Accident
- A38 westbound between A390 near Liskeard (west) and A30: Accident
- A56 southbound between A680 and B6232: Congestion
- A56 northbound between B6232 and A680: Congestion
- A66 westbound within the A19 junction before A19 southbound access: Congestion
- Link road from M25 J7 clockwise to M23 J8 southbound: Congestion
- Link road from M25 J7 anti-clockwise to M23 J8 southbound: Congestion
- M3 westbound between J2 and J3: Overturned Vehicle
- M4 spur (Heathrow) southbound between M4 and J4A: Congestion
- M66 northbound between J1 and A56/A680/A676: Congestion
- Bristol Airport: Airfield closed until at least 12pm
- Bournemouth Airport: Airfield closed ‘until further notice’
- London Heathrow Airport: Some British Airways short-haul flights affected
After an extraordinary dump of snow fell overnight, it emerged:
- The Met Office has issued an amber weather warning of snow for part of the south-east with Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, and Hampshire expected to be worst hit;
- Flights were affected with Bristol Airport closed until at least 12pm and Bournemouth Airport shut ‘until further notice’. Short-haul flights from Heathrow are subject to cancellations;
- Highways Agency issues warnings for more than 20 major A-roads and motorways hit by snow and warns drivers not to travel unless essential;
A pivoting system of wintry weather saw much of southern England and Wales wake up to more of the white stuff.
An amber warning was issued for an area west of London including Oxfordshire, Hampshire and Buckinghamshire, with stranded vehicles and power cuts ‘likely’, and a ‘good chance’ some rural communities could be cut off.
The alert comes after as much as 5.5in (14cm) of snow wreaked havoc in the South West yesterday. Efforts to rescue motorists stranded on snowbound roads in Devon and Cornwall continued through the night.
Meanwhile hundreds of people were forced to find shelter where they could. Persistent snow began to spread across the south east late last night and flurries were seen all the way into central London.
The Met Office has also has two yellow weather warnings of snow and ice in force until this afternoon covering southern England and Wales, as well as the eastern edge of the UK from Shetland to The Wash.
Police forces across the country are warning motorists to consider if their journeys are necessary before heading out today and be ‘extremely careful’ if have to travel by road.
On the rail network, Southeastern and Transport for Wales have altered their services today as a result of the adverse conditions.
South Western Railway was planning to run a normal timetable, but warned some early services may need to be cancelled as routes are cleared.
Meanwhile Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Gatwick Express were expected to run normally, although all passengers were urged to check before they travel in case the conditions impact services.
Transport for London also advised passengers to check their service status before setting off. Airports were also hit by the freezing weather, with Bristol Airport suspending flights until 8am while the runway was cleared.
Snow was also seen falling at Heathrow, where British Airways altered a number of short-haul flights, and passengers using the hub were being told to stay in contact with their airlines before travelling.
Gatwick Airport also saw flurries, although the airport was advising passengers it was planning on operating as normal today.
Temperatures will remain low across Britain this afternoon (left) and the Met Office issued a series of weather warnings (right)
Snow is continuing to fall across much of southern England and South Wales this morning, as shown in this graphic
Temperatures will remain low this weekend – with a maximum of 8C expected in the South West and South Wales by Sunday
This graphic shows where the snow is falling across southern England this morning (in white) along with rain (in blue)
A Central Line train pulls into a West London station today amid frozen and treacherous conditions in the capital’s suburbs
The snow-covered roofs of suburban London today as the capital has a rare but significant period of snow
Heavy snow in London turned to sleet today as workers crossed London Bridge with The Shard shrouded in mist
Queues form in London Bridge Station where trains into Kent were running at a reduced number due to the wintry conditions
The 187 bus to Finchley Road drives through the morning snowfall in west London today as people were warned not to travel unless necessary
A freezing commuter on a Boris Bike pedals through the slush and snow in north London today
London has had its biggest dump of snow of the winter delivered from the skies overnight and it was still falling during rush hour
Dog walkers in the snow, at Clayfield Copse, Berkshire, today
There are wintry conditions in Bristol, in Winterbourne, South Gloucestershire, and Reading, Berkshire, in pictures sent in by MailOnline readers
This MailOnline photo shows snow-covered Harpenden in Hertfordshire from above roof heavy with snow
Rickmansworth in Hertfordshire is blanketed in frozen flakes of snow in this idyllic reader’s photo
The snowy scene from Dunders Hill above Polzeath Beach looking towards New Polzeath in Cornwall
Met Office meteorologist Emma Smith said: ‘There is still sleet and snow across southern counties, the band is currently sitting across the south-west and Wales and across to East Anglia and London.
Where and when are the Met Office warnings?
HAMPSHIRE, BERKSHIRE, BUCKINGHAMSHIRE & OXFORDSHIRE
AMBER: Snow, until 11am today
SOUTHERN ENGLAND & WALES
YELLOW: Snow and ice, until 1pm today
EASTERN ENGLAND & SCOTLAND
YELLOW: Snow and ice, until 12pm today
‘It’s kind of pivoting in place and it’s not really moving very far. What will be happening to it is it will get patchier as it goes on, but it could cause some disruption to rush hour.
‘Temperatures are widely below freezing so there’s icy stretches so people will have to take care going into work.’
By lunchtime temperatures in the South East are expected to nudge towards 4C (39F), meaning the sleet and snow should turn to rain.
However the rest of the country, with the exception of southern Scotland and Northern Ireland, is expected to see wintry showers persist into this evening.
‘Into the afternoon those showers will go into the Pennies and the Peak District as well,’ Ms Smith said.
The Met Office said a low of minus -15.4C (4.3F) was recorded just before midnight at Braemar. Had it fallen more than 0.2C, lower it would have surpassed the low of -15.6C (3.92F) set in 2012.
Across Devonshire 34 schools have said they will be closed or partially closed today and 35 schools across Cornwall have also said they will not be opening, according to the two county councils.
A snow covered boat at Pewsey on the Kennet & Avon canal this morning shows how hard the West Country has been hit
Sophie Taylor’s Siberian Cat stalking their garden in High Wycombe today in a rare scene more like Russia than Bucks
Snow in Compton near Newbury today where this resident who sent a picture to MailOnline looked like she was snowed in
The glorious dawn at Bingley St Ives near Bradford, West Yorkshire, taken from the local golf club all covered in snow
A motorist clears the windows of a vehicle in Bristol after snowfall yesterday and overnight caused widespread disruption
The snowy scene in Gateshead this morning looking over to Newcastle from the banks of the famous Tyne river
Slow moving traffic on the roads in Hanham, South Gloucestershire this morning with more set to come today
A woman on skis tries them out in the shadow of Brunel’s famous Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol today
Bristol has received a huge dump of snow overnight with cars and roads all treacherous because of the ice below
Bristol Airport posted this picture of the conditions this morning with planes remaining on the stands because of the weather
More than 100 people sought refuge at a pub high on Bodmin Moor overnight after heavy snowfall hit the A30, leading many stranded motorists to abandon their cars.
Some of those reaching the Jamaica Inn reported trudging through snow for several miles after more than 12cm of the white stuff brought ‘chaos’ to the cross-country route on Thursday.
The pub’s 25-year-old general manager, Sammy Wheeler, said groups and families with young children arrived in droves after around 100 cars got stuck on a nearby stretch of the A30.
‘A lot of people have abandoned their cars. Some of them have walked a good three, four or five miles,’ she told the Press Association.
‘People were fed up of being in a cold car and they were running out of fuel.’
Each of the inn’s 36 rooms was full, with some being shared by complete strangers on Thursday night.
Meanwhile makeshift dormitories with mattresses on the floors were set up in other parts of the pub, including 15 beds in the restaurant another five in the lounge.
Paul Drye, 54, from St Austell, Cornwall, was heading home after working in Dorchester, Dorset, on Thursday afternoon when he became stuck on the A30 around 3.30 pm.
He said: ‘There had been a bit of heavy snow but while everything was moving it was fine, but as soon as there was a few incidents up ahead everything ground to a halt.
‘You never know how long these things are going to last, whether it will be moving in two minutes or four hours as it turned out.’
Mr Drye arrived at the Jamaica Inn around 7.30 pm and was met with a real ‘cross-section’ of people including dogs, children and truck drivers.
‘People were still arriving until the early hours of the morning, people who had left their cars and walked, a couple miles some of them,’ he said.
The Jamaica Inn staff were like a ‘well-oiled machine’, they provided mattresses, blankets and pillows for everybody and stayed up all night stoking fires, Mr Dyre said.
* Taken any photos of snow in Britain today? Please email [email protected] with their location *
Beds laid last night at the Jamaica Inn, made famous by Daphne du Maurier in her classic novel, on Bodmin Moor for drivers
Pictured: Newborn baby girl found abandoned in freezing cold snow-blown London park as police launch urgent bid to find her missing mother
A newborn baby girl was found abandoned in an east London park last night as temperatures plunged to freezing and blizzards hit the capital.
Police this morning released a picture of the infant in a bid to trace her mother, who officers said they were ‘increasingly concerned’ for.
The girl was discovered in a small park on an estate in Newham at around 10:15pm on Thursday night and taken to hospital where she is being cared for, the Metropolitan Police said.
Police this morning released this picture of the baby in a bid to trace her missing mother
The force said it was called to reports of an abandoned baby at a park area close to Roman Road and Saxon Road at around 10.15pm
The Met said officers are growing ‘increasingly concerned’ for the mother’s welfare and appealed for her to contact police, her local hospital or GP surgery. Pictured: the location where the newborn was found
The Met said officers are growing ‘increasingly concerned’ for the mother’s welfare and appealed for her to contact police, her local hospital or GP surgery.
In a direct appeal to the child’s mother, Inspector Shane Clarke of North East Command Unit, said: ‘We are growing increasingly concerned for your welfare and I urge you to make contact either with police, your local hospital or GP surgery. It is really important that we know that you are safe.
‘I would also urge anyone who has information that could help us to reunite this baby with her mother to come forward.’
Anyone with information as to the whereabouts of the mother is asked to call police on 101 quoting reference CAD7825/31JAN or Tweet @MetCC.
Heavy snowfall hit much of southern England and and Wales on Thursday night, leaving people trapped in cars as temperatures plummeted to just 1C (34F) in east London at the time the baby way found.
The snowfall already exceeds the maximum 10cm of snowfall that was predicted when the Mt Office issued a severe weather warning for Thursday.
The snow, which has been travelling eastwards, has reached as far as Wiltshire, Hampshire, Sussex and Kent, with a few flakes in central London on Thursday and into the early hours of Friday morning.
The Met Office tweeted: ‘Snow, initially moving north and east across parts of southern and southwestern England, the Midlands and Wales, will stall and tend to fragment.
‘Wintry showers will continue in northern and eastern areas. Ice is likely in many parts overnight.’
There are ‘treacherous driving conditions in places’, the forecaster added.
Commuters in many parts of the country were warned to leave work early on Thursday to ensure they got home.
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