Suffolk/Essex: Winter returns with a vengeance

Ampton point to point race meeting was cancelled due to snow on the course. Pictured is groundsman R

Ampton point to point race meeting was cancelled due to snow on the course. Pictured is groundsman Robert Capon. - Credit: Archant

MUMS across Suffolk and Essex woke up yesterday morning to the kind of weather they would expect to see at Christmas time rather than on Mothering Sunday.

Anyone who thought spring had arrived was sorely mistaken as parts of both counties experienced snow showers and temperatures which struggled to stay above freezing.

Overnight on Saturday, several centimetres of snow accumulated in many of Suffolk’s towns and villages, while elsewhere in the county, motorists had to contend with flooded roads and standing water, making driving conditions hazardous.

Sporting events, including point to point racing at Ampton racecourse just outside Bury St Edmunds, had to be cancelled due to snow on the track.

But according to regional forecaster, Dan Holley, from Norwich-based Weatherquest, the cold, wet and snowy conditions are not unusual for the time of year. He warned that both counties would be in for a “bitterly cold” day today before temperatures gradually increased towards the end of the week.

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He said: “It is going to stay cold for the time being but conditions should improve as the week progresses. We are likely to see some further occasional snow showers today, especially in places near to the coast in Essex.

“Yesterday, most places struggled to get above 1C or 2C. Today, temperatures will hover around zero, but the strength of the easterly wind will make it feel nearer to -8C. It will feel bitterly cold if you are out.”

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He said conditions would start to improve tomorrow, with rain eventually coming back to the region from the west. “So by Friday, daytime temperatures will be back up to around 7C,” he added.

As rain, sleet and snow fell across Suffolk and Essex over the weekend, the Environment Agency issued a series of flood warnings for areas close to rivers, and advised of the risk of groundwater flooding in towns, including Newmarket.

Police advised motorists to allow extra time for their journey, slow down and not to attempt to drive through flooded roads.

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