Hazardous conditions as Storm Freya batters Britain with gales and snow

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Storm Freya has battered Britain with gales, heavy rain and snow that caused widespread travel disruption.

Some wet and windy weather is expected to linger into Monday morning as the storm moves into the North Sea.

A yellow warning for wind lifted at 6am after gusts of up to nearly 80mph whipped a large swathe of the country on Sunday, with downed trees and debris causing power cuts and affecting travel.

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The Met Office also issued a yellow warning for snow until 2am as heavy falls hit high routes across the Pennines, stranding motorists on the A595 in Cumbria.

People photograph the waves battering the coast at Porthleven, Cornwall. PIC: PAPeople photograph the waves battering the coast at Porthleven, Cornwall. PIC: PA
People photograph the waves battering the coast at Porthleven, Cornwall. PIC: PA

At Spadeadam, near the Northumbria border, 6cm (2.4in) of snow was recorded on Sunday night, while Cumbria Police said hazardous conditions were being reported across the county and urged motorists not to travel unless necessary.

One motorist said there was “chaos” on the A595, tweeting: “Shocked at how bad it is! Major problems in Cumbria due to the snow! Very severe.”

High winds, which reached 76mph at Mumbles Head on Swansea Bay, caused disruption on the rail network across Wales and the Midlands.

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Meanwhile, police forces across England and Wales reported gales had brought down trees and blown branches into roads, blocking some routes for motorists.


The stormy conditions were expected to have eased by rush hour on Monday morning, although some rain and gusty winds and some snow will continue.

More than a dozen flood alerts are in place across the south-west, as well as two flood warnings, ahead of a fresh band of rain.

Met Office forecaster Emma Smith said: “By six o’clock on Monday the centre of Storm Freya will be out over the North Sea.

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“There will still be outbreaks of rain, sleet and snow just clipping the coast by Newcastle and southern Scotland.

“Thereafter into Monday there will be plenty of sunshine around, then we will get a band of showery rain moving in from the south-west.

“That’s going to be moving across Devon and Cornwall first and moving into Wales and Northern Ireland through the morning.

“By the afternoon it will be into the Midlands and towards London with some hail and thunder. Northern and eastern areas will stay sunniest and it will be quite blustery as well, with some gale-force gusts in the west.”