This morning in southern England we have more snow than we have had for 18 years, they say – a whole 10 cm or 4 inches in London, and about the same here in Chelmsford. This is of course nothing to my friends in North America, who have been blogging and twittering about being snowed in for months, it seems. Here is what has fallen here, as seen from my back window:

Not a day to eat in my garden!

Not a day to eat in my garden!

In fact the snow seems somewhat local. Only about 60 miles north of London there is so little snow that Dave Warnock has set off on a 30 mile journey on a bicycle! And from Newcastle, 300 miles north, Madpriest offers some humorous observations on the “state of panic” in the south.

But there is a silver lining to this cloud, and not just for the local children who are having fun in the snow (and throwing snowballs at me, but then I did provoke them) because the schools are closed. In countries where snow is common, life would carry on more or less as normal after a fall of a mere 10 cm – especially as the temperature is only just around freezing. But, as reported by the BBC, the result in London is that

The entire bus network and three Underground lines – the Circle, Hammersmith & City and Waterloo & City lines – have been suspended.

And so, as Steph has pointed out in a comment from summery New Zealand, that means that London’s infamous Agnostibuses are off the road – because of what would still officially be described as an act of God!

0 thoughts on “Snow!

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  7. Well the snow did end up much heavier than the met office predicted and my bike had to be pushed up hills, plus I fell off a couple of times. But I got to the very remote retreat centre that a number of people coming by car did not get to.

    Bikes are not crazy when the snow is falling. Only when the traffic builds up and is driving in narrow lanes between the snow.

  8. Dave, I’m just glad you made it there and back safely. I think my main concern about cycling in weather like this would be that I would have no protection from the elements if I was stranded somewhere.

  9. Peter,

    My concern is different. In this country, even in rural Leicestershire where I was, you are never far from a farm or a barn – both of which are warmer than a car. Plus many people in cars don’t have proper footwear or clothes if they need to walk whereas a cyclist is much more likely to be dressed for being outside.

    Even I (unfit etc) was able to cycle 51 miles in snow towing a trailer. I was able to get to a retreat centre that defeated several people in cars. Up hills that no cars could get up (I ended up going a bit of a roundabout way due to my glasses getting covered with snow and thus missing a turning).

    The problem comes later when the roads clear enough to have tracks for cars. Then there is nowhere for the cyclist to ride safely. Car drivers will push past even when there is no space and they have no grip.

    As always it is drivers that make cycling dangerous not cycling itself.

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