December set to be coldest for a century
Saturday 25 December 2010
As the icy weather set to continue, the UK could be heading for its coldest December since 1890, forecasters said.
Temperatures were expected to remain below freezing on Boxing Day with spells of rain, sleet and snow in northern Ireland, Scotland and parts of west Wales and far west England, spreading eastwards overnight.
But they added that temperatures could rise as high as 10C (50F) by the middle of next week as a new weather system moves in from the Atlantic.
Those braving the bleak mid-winter to get away for Christmas yesterday faced reduced rail services, icy roads and continuing cancellations and delays to flights.
A number of train companies ran amended timetables, with some services axed on the main London to Scotland routes up the east and west coast.
The RMT transport union said it was "scandalous" that train companies could bring in "special" timetables and avoid financial penalties.
British Airways operated all its long-haul flights at Heathrow airport as well as the vast majority of short-haul services.
Where possible, BA flew larger long-haul aircraft to European cities on Christmas Eve to increase its seat capacity. The airline was also hiring extra aircraft to help fly as many passengers as possible.
Away from Heathrow, other UK airports had to cancel some short-haul flights due to the continuing bad weather in Europe.
The AA said call-outs on Christmas Eve were still 40% above normal due to last-minute Christmas shopping and getaway traffic.
It added it expected to cover around 13,000 breakdowns by the end of December 24 compared with just over 9,000 on a normal Friday.
The Highways Agency advised motorists to take extra care and be mindful of difficult driving conditions, with low temperatures forecast over the weekend.
Police and coastguards were yesterday called to help a number of drivers stuck in cars after a snap blizzard hit the Whitby area of North Yorkshire.
Belle Knox: How the porn star student from Duke University became bigger than Justin Bieber
Top 10 most expensive cities in the world: Singapore named costliest place to live – but what about London?
Oscar Pistorius trial: Neighbour feared athlete would use gun that killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp to shoot himself
Oscar Pistorius trial: Athlete 'cheated on me' with Reeva Steenkamp, former girlfriend Samantha Taylor tells Pretoria court
Channel 4 announces two-hour TV show to be broadcast 'Live from Space' later this month
Apple's Tim Cook: Business isn’t just about making profit
Thousands of young people forced to go without food after benefits wrongly stopped under 'draconian' new sanctions regime
Ukraine crisis: New navy chief 'defects' and surrenders Crimean HQ as Putin claims ultranationalists forced intervention
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Ukraine crisis: Russia dismisses '3am ultimatum' as 'total nonsense'
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
- 1 The future of sex: The first female condoms were derided, mistrusted and shunned - but will their modern counterparts catch on?
- 2 South African rhino finally put down after roaming Kruger park for days with horn hacked off and bullet in brain
- 3 Channel 4 announces two-hour TV show to be broadcast 'Live from Space' later this month
- 4 Man stabbed with Legend of Zelda Master Sword in serious condition
- 5 Study suggests that 'gaydars' are real - at least for women
£45 - 60k Per Annum: Charter Selection: Highly profitable leisure brand, marke...
£30000 - £50000 per annum + Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: Residenti...
£40k to £50k pa OTE £80k: Charter Selection: My client, a leading profitable a...
£46,141 to £51,816: Public Prosecution Service for Northern Ireland: The PPS i...