Spring blizzards strand British motorists

2013-03-12 14:02
Cars follow the tracks of cars in front and keep one lane open on a main road near Newcastle, northern England, after overnight snow and freezing temperatures covered the region. (Owen Humphreys, PA/ AP)

Cars follow the tracks of cars in front and keep one lane open on a main road near Newcastle, northern England, after overnight snow and freezing temperatures covered the region. (Owen Humphreys, PA/ AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

London - Britain was hit by unseasonable spring blizzards that left hundreds of people stuck in their cars overnight and disrupted Eurostar services to the continent on Tuesday.

Drivers including former Eurovision song contest winner Cheryl Baker were trapped for more than 10 hours as ice, snow and freezing winds descended on southeastern England.

Police, rescue services, snow ploughs and gritting lorries battled to help the stricken motorists in temperatures as low as -3°C.

The Met Office said conditions would remain "unsettled with below average temperatures" even beyond next week, in the run-up to Easter.

The counties of Sussex and Kent bordering London were worst affected with roads including stretches of the M23 motorway near Gatwick Airport under 10cm of snow.

Singer Cheryl Baker, formerly of the band Bucks Fizz which won the 1981 Eurovision with the song "Making Your Mind Up", was among those caught up in the chaos as she tried to reach Brighton to pick up her children.

Students stuck

"We [took] 10 hours to do a one-hour journey," she told ITV.

"The traffic and the weather have just been atrocious and none of the roads had been gritted. There are snowploughs coming out now - it is like after the horse has bolted."

Long queues of lorries waited to enter the Channel Tunnel, which was closed for six hours overnight because of technical problems.

More than 100 people spent four hours on the road to the Channel Port of Dover after a lorry jack-knifed amid snowdrifts, police said.

Eurostar "strongly advised" passengers not to travel, saying that services of the train that runs under the English channel were disrupted "due to extreme weather conditions".

Around 120 German students were stuck overnight in the town hall of the southeastern coastal resort town of Hastings as families due to host them were unable to pick them up.

Read more on:    weather

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Time to let Charlie go - dad

2017-07-24 17:46

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Fascinating facts about dogs

Think you know a lot about dogs? How many of these facts do you know?



Perfectly captured cat snapchats!
Fascinating facts about dogs
Out with the old dog, in with the new
Play with your pet when you're not at home
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.