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Worst Winter?


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Ahhh yer see,

twas while prostrating meself over the school desk enjoying six o the best, and thank you very much sir and keep the change, that my gaze first fell upon a painting hanging in the headmasters study, that I first saw the old painting of people skating on a frozen River Mersey at Warrington Bridge. :wink:


You have to pay good money for that kind of service nowadays.

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The coolest period in the middle of the last millennium is referred to as the 'Little Ice Age'. In British terms it ran from medieval times until 1850. Ever since that time our climate has been getting warmer but even in today's warmer climate, snow and ice still cover our highest mountains during the winter months.


Having said that winter in the UK rarely sets in before December. The coldest months are still usually January and February. There haven't been to many cold winters recently in the UK and the number of days with snow cover are becoming fewer too. It's getting harder and harder to make a snowman in Southern England! Many young children living here are still waiting to see their first white Christmas. If global warming predictions from the Met Office's Hadley Centre are correct they may never live to see it. The predictions for the next 50 years are that our winters will become milder, wetter and windier. The last white Christmases in London were 1906, 1916, 1927, 1938, 1956, 1964, 1968, 1970,1976, 1981, 1996 and 1999.


So you have to go back in history to find the real cold snaps. The record for the coldest winter still stands at -27.2C recorded at Braemar, Scotland on 11th February 1895 also repeated on the 10th January 1982. In fact in January 1982 the weather across the whole of the UK was very cold, even in Southern England temperatures fell to -20C. However to put this cold weather into perspective the world record low temperature is -89.2C recorded at Vostok base in Antarctica!


Looking over the last 150 years there have been several notable winter events in the UK. The four coldest this century have been 1963 ( the coldest and the 3rd coldest behind 1684 and 1740), then 1947, 1940 and 1979. In 1963 the cold weather started in December 1962 and persisted through to February 1963. It was a terrible time for people especially in the Southwest of England where many were cut off and trapped in their homes for long periods of time.


The worst snow disaster in UK history occurred in blizzard conditions during Christmas 1836. England was covered in snow, particularly severe over the South Downs. The snow started on Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day the blizzard started. Large snow drifts started to be whipped up, eventually reaching a height of 3-5 metres in Lewes, Sussex. By Boxing Day the town of Lewes was cut off.


In nearby Brighton 2 people died from the cold. But the situation was about to get worse. At the foot of a cliff in Lewes a large overhang of snow was starting to threaten the houses below. When cracks started appearing in the snow the residents were asked to evacuate. They ignored the warning and at 10.15am on 27th December the overhang of snow collapsed onto the street below. 15 people were trapped in their houses, 8 died from suffocation or were crushed under the weight of their homes. The next day there was another avalanche which hampered the rescue attempts. The place is still commemorated today in a pub called the Snowdrop Inn, far from meaning a gentle flower.


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Just a little addition:


Residents in the nation's heartland were digging out after a blustery storm as meteorologists warned that blizzard conditions could continue across the northern Plains on Saturday.


The National Weather Service issued blizzard warnings for parts of North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming, Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin through Saturday. The storm had already dumped significant snow across the region, including a record 14 inches in Oklahoma City and 11 inches in Duluth, Minn., on Thursday.


Slippery roads have been blamed for at least 21 deaths this week as the storm lumbered across the country from the Southwest.


Paul Mews, who drove from Faribault, Minn., to a relative's home in Plum City, Wis., on Friday morning, said the first 15 minutes of the 80-mile trip were clear, but a surge of heavy snowfall produced a stretch of near-whiteout conditions.


"It was snow-pocalypse. It was wicked," said Mews, 25. "We thought about turning around and going back."


They decided to continue when the surge passed minutes later.


I do Not Miss It!!!

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