Page last updated at 23:38 GMT, Tuesday, 3 February 2009
UK prepares for freezing weekend



Travel disruption and school closures have continued amid the week's heavy snowfalls. The storms which crippled the south-east of England on Monday spread across Wales, the north and south-west of England on Tuesday. This was the picture as of 23:30 GMT on Tuesday.

LONDON
WEATHER AND TRAVEL LINKS
UK Weather map 1300, 3 February 2009

Commuters have endured a second day of travel disruption.

On the Underground, all lines are now running again - albeit some subject to delays.

Most bus routes are operating but two remain suspended and some are being diverted around dangerous areas, Transport for London said.

London City Airport reopened but delays and cancellations continued throughout the day.

Heathrow and Gatwick were open but flights were subject to cancellations and delays.

Services were again badly affected on Southeastern, Southern and South West Trains into and out of the capital, with suspensions or reduced timetables on most routes.

However, the operators expect a normal timetable to be in place on Wednesday.

Eurostar cancelled eight services and is expecting to cancel four trains on Wednesday.

The Tramlink in south London remains suspended on all routes except between Wimbledon and Lebanon Road.

Buses crossing Waterloo Bridge
Almost all London bus routes are running again

An accident on the clockwise M25, between junction 9 at Leatherhead and junction 10 at Kingston, closed three lanes on Tuesday afternoon and led to half-hour delays.

In central London, ice closed the westbound side of the Piccadilly underpass for much of Tuesday.

Schools in many boroughs remained closed for a second day.

SOUTH WEST

Two military rescue helicopters assisted ambulance services in parts of Devon and Cornwall.

Falmouth snow
Falmouth was covered in snow on Tuesday morning. Pic: Toby Budd

Roads became impassable and more than 250 schools were closed across the counties as some areas, mostly in the west and north, were covered by four inches (10cm) of snow.

Parts of the A30 were blocked by a series of accidents.

The A39 between Camelford and Bude was also virtually impassable and four vehicles were stuck in the snow at Polyphant near Launceston.

North Devon District Hospital cancelled all out-patient appointments.

Services were disrupted on First Great Western trains and Newquay Airport flights were affected earlier.

WALES

Heavy snow brought delays and disruption to road users across much of Wales and about 500 schools closed.

Up to six inches (15cm) fell in some areas overnight, with south, west and mid Wales worst affected.

Nearly 40 schools across the country - including many in the Rhondda - are to close on Wednesday, it has already been announced.

The Met Office issued severe weather warnings for Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, Merthyr Tydfil, Monmouthshire, Neath Port Talbot, Newport, Pembrokeshire, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Swansea, Torfaen and Vale of Glamorgan.

Snow caused problems in Sennybridge, on the Heads of the Valleys Road around Merthyr Tydfil, Builth Wells, Swansea and in Flintshire.

First Buses, which serves south and west Wales, took all its vehicles off the road, while Veolia Transport Cymru also cancelled most services.

Meanwhile, the driver of a gritting lorry narrowly escaped injury when a snowball containing a brick smashed through the window of his cab in Torfaen, south east Wales.

Police in Gwent reported the number of calls to the force had risen by 50% in the past 24 hours, largely because of the number of people complaining about youngsters throwing snowballs.

NORTHERN ENGLAND

Trains on the East Coast Main Line were disrupted, with several services between London and Leeds cancelled.

Stockport, 3 February 2009

The A635 Holmfirth Road between Greenfield and Holmfirth was closed due to snow as well as the A672 Ripponden Road between Denshaw and the M62 motorway at J22.

The majority of the schools which closed yesterday because of snow in Cumbria, Lancashire and Greater Manchester reopened.

On public transport, Virgin Trains ran a reduced service between Manchester Piccadilly and London Euston.

Cumbria, meanwhile, escaped predicted heavy snowfalls, which were feared would bring a second day of commuter chaos and school closures.

The Highways Agency said the A66 between Brough in Cumbria and the A1 in County Durham were closed.

About 30 schools in North Yorkshire remained closed. Schools in West Yorkshire also had a further day of closures after a second night of heavy snow in places.

In Bradford, the city council said all of the district's 197 schools would be closed for the day. Dozens of others across the county remained shut.

NORTHERN IRELAND

Northern Ireland escaped the worst of the snow but it affected high ground.

The weather and technical problems led to major disruption for people taking flights into Northern Ireland or travelling by train.

Radio problems caused delays on all Northern Ireland train services, whilst the snow meant delays to flights from England.

SCOTLAND

Scotland avoided the severe weather which had gripped much of England and Wales.

Overnight the temperature in most of Scotland stayed above freezing and there was not widespread snowfall.

All main roads are open.

All 74 schools in the Borders remained closed, however, because of heavy snow there on Monday.

EAST ANGLIA

Flights out of Luton Airport in Bedfordshire were subject to delays or cancellations but Stansted Airport operated normally.

A revised National Express East Anglia train service operated between London Liverpool Street and Cambridge, and Liverpool Street and Enfield Town.

There was a revised timetable operating between King's Cross and Peterborough and King's Cross and Cambridge.

Hertfordshire County Council warned parents there would be no school buses provided.

In Essex, more than 400 schools decided to close for the day but most schools in Norfolk and Suffolk re-opened.

SOUTH AND SOUTH EAST

Schools in Surrey remained shut and more than 420 schools in Sussex, 370 in Kent and 250 in Berkshire also closed.

Rail services into London from Sussex and some parts of Kent resumed.

Snow and icy conditions continued to cause problems for large parts of Hampshire, Berkshire and Dorset.

There were delays of up to an hour on the M27, near Southampton in Hampshire, after a 14-vehicle smash closed two lanes on Tuesday afternoon. Traffic was flowing again by early evening.

Southampton Airport had to close its runway twice on Tuesday because of snow storms. It reopened in the afternoon but at least eight flights were cancelled.

Bournemouth Airport's runway reopened shortly before 1500 GMT after the weather had forced its closure.

MIDLANDS

The southbound carriageway of the M5 was closed between junctions 12 and 13, the exits for Gloucester and Stroud, after an accident involving a truck. It was cleared during the evening.

All 428 schools in Birmingham remained closed, along with those in Dudley and Solihull.

Over 300 schools and colleges shut in Leicestershire and Rutland.

Some 47 schools in Shropshire and about 60 in Gloucestershire closed, while about 60 remained shut in Northamptonshire.

Birmingham International Airport suffered a number of "knock-on delays" caused by the effects of the heavy snow on Monday.

The runway had been closed for almost three hours on Monday night because of heavy snowfall.

Meanwhile, police received more than 80 complaints about snowballs being thrown at buses, cars and homes in north Worcestershire.


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