Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way

At the peak of the storm, a wind speeds of 144mph was recorded in the remotest part of the UK

Click to follow

Northern parts of the UK were faced with harsh gales, snow and lightning strikes over the last two days, which left tens of thousands of people without electricity.

Residents and businesses in the Western Isles and Skye and the west coast of Scotland bore the brunt of the ferocious conditions.

A wind speed of 144mph was recorded on the remote St Kilda islands yesterday, with gusts of more than 80mph also hitting some low-lying areas.

When problems were at their worst yesterday, around 30,000 homes were without electricity, while a further 27,000 were cut off after a lightning strike this morning. 

A car drives down the main road to Kielder in Northumberland

All properties have now been reconnected but further problems are anticipated.

An SSE Energy spokesman said it has dealt with 80 high voltage faults today and 120 yesterday, and engineers have now restored power to around 27,000 customers who were cut off this morning in Sky and the Western Isles.

Weather warnings remain in place for much of the UK but the mainland has so far survived relatively unscathed. The process behind the storm - rapid cyclogenesis - is known colloquially as a “weather bomb”.

People make their way through foam whipped up by the sea near Blackpool

Forecasters said there could be “significant” snow accumulations in parts of Scotland, with the rest of the UK set to see the white stuff over the weekend.

There is an 80 per cent probability of icy conditions and some snow in the North of England between midnight on Friday and Sunday morning, according to the Met Office.

Scotland's Deputy First Minister John Swinney last night praised frontline staff for how they dealt with disruption to travel and power supplies.

He said: “I am pleased to report that we are seeing an improving picture in terms of the stormy conditions".

Additional reporting PA