Snow caused chaos in Bexhill
SNOW swept into Bexhill and its surrounding villages with a vengeance on Monday morning and by dusk many local roads were virtually grid-locked.
Blown in on a bitter north-easterly wind, the snow rapidly accumulated, and with sub-zero temperatures roads and pavements took on an icy sheen.
It proved the undoing of many motorists, with some vehicles involved in a spate of collisions while others were abandoned as progress became impossible.
The B2204 between Ninfield and Catsfield was one treacherous stretch, where a Mercedes-Benz estate was left by the roadside after being damaged and single and double-decker buses, too, had to be left where they were.
On the A269 Bexhill Road, Ninfield, a car was badly damaged and abandoned following a collision.
Devonshire Road and Western Road in the centre of Bexhill soon became devoid of shoppers, so that the usually busy streets took on the appearance of a ghost town.
Most local schools saw out the day, but overnight many headteachers - faced with safety concerns and staff unable to get in from distant homes - took the decision not to open on Tuesday.
One exception was Charters Ancaster Preparatory School and Nursery where headteacher Miriam Black and many of her team were in way before 7am on Tuesday to clear the school approaches of ice and snow.
Bursar Roger Powell said: “We always endeavour to stay open to provide a service to our parents, though unfortunately on this occasion the staff almost outnumbered the pupils as many found roads around their homes impassable.”
Mr Powell added: “Our minibus left school at 4.30pm on Monday afternoon to take pupils home to Hastings and did not get back until gone 11pm.”
Leading Bexhill employer, the insurance company Hastings Direct, released staff early as the weather closed in, but traffic even on major roads such as the A259 was nose-to-tail and it took many workers several hours to reach home.
In Sidley, the New Inn took on a cosy Christmas look as it offered sanctuary from the snow.
But with buses cancelled, trains delayed, and taxi drivers reluctant to risk certain routes because of ice - the gradient at Wrestwood Roadbeing one of several blackspots - a the evening rush hour was a nightmare, whether people were leaving Bexhill o r trying to come back in.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Bexhill-on-Sea
Saturday 18 May 2013
Temperature: 8 C to 14 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: South west
Temperature: 8 C to 14 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: North east