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The Great Midlands Blizzard 9th December 1990


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Posted
  • Location: Bedworth, North Warwickshire 404ft above sea level
  • Location: Bedworth, North Warwickshire 404ft above sea level

    I finally got around to raiding the microfiches of nuneaton library to find the newspaper clippings of that famous day!

    Sorry abut the photo quality but i have yet to find any photo's from around here on that day, maybe i should phone the newspaper office and ask if they have any archived?

    Anyway, here you go..............

    blizzard9thdec90kv3.jpg

    001uf0.jpg

    002vh3.jpg

    You'll have to click to read the whole page as i'm not good a resizing.

    The things i remember about that day are...

    Waking up at my aunty's house and haering her excitedly shouting "look out of the window kids!" so we did and saw an amazing sight.

    Almost 2 feet of level snow in the back yard and in the street out the front of the house, was a line of bumps in the snow where all the cars were parked!!

    As we opened the door to rush out and play, a 5 foot wall of snow crashed onto the kitchen floor, which we then had to shovel quickly back out lol

    We then made the long walk back home 4 miles from stockingford to attleborough.

    the first mile was the worst as there was nothing to clear the snow from the road and walking was an art form! so we had to lift up one leg over the snow then the next for what seemed like ages.

    Eventually we reached the main road and the walking was much easier as the tractors had managed to get through but that was all.

    After we reached home, we had to yet again shovel all of the snow back out which had fallen in after opening the front door, then we had the best few days of our lives in the candlelight, playing cards and monopoly and occasionally hearing great slabs of snow crashing to the ground from the roof, which had to be cleared again from the front door lol

    We had no water or electricity for 4 days and the gas pressure was right down too!

    We had to melt snow to cook with and made a little 'igloo' in the garden to put all of the freezer stuff in, which worked a treat!

    The nuneaton area was really badly hit by the blizzard and there were still humps of snow and ice almost two weeks after the blizzard where the snow ploughs had dumped it.

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    Posted
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl
  • Weather Preferences: obviously snow!
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl

    good old winters, struggle to even get a 5 minute dusting these days here

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    Posted
  • Location: Scunny Lincolnshire.41m (134FT)ASL
  • Location: Scunny Lincolnshire.41m (134FT)ASL
    good old winters, struggle to even get a 5 minute dusting these days here

    Not much better here :wacko:

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    Posted
  • Location: Upton, Northampton.
  • Weather Preferences: Snow, storms
  • Location: Upton, Northampton.

    I would have been 2 years old when that happened, I guess Leicestershire must have been hit badly aswell? Nuneaton is only about 25 miles south west of me.

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    Posted
  • Location: Bedworth, North Warwickshire 404ft above sea level
  • Location: Bedworth, North Warwickshire 404ft above sea level

    As I recall Leicestershire was hit badly too, especially hinckley way?

    002hy8.jpg

    this i hope is a better copy?

    Edited by cyclonic happiness
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    Posted
  • Location: Cambridge (term time) and Bonn, Germany 170m (holidays)
  • Location: Cambridge (term time) and Bonn, Germany 170m (holidays)

    That was the day I was born! :clap:

    Edited by Yeti
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    • 4 weeks later...
    Posted
  • Location: Harborne, Bham 187m asl
  • Location: Harborne, Bham 187m asl

    The largest snowfall since then in the birmingham area seems to be Feb 8th-9th 2007. 5 inches of snow on the Thursday followed by another 4 inches on the Friday led to 9 inches of lying snow by Friday evening. This was a very good snow event in an otherwise mild and boring winter.

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    thats enough torture :doh:

    Most interesting research, well done! Where I live (in the South) we were not affected at all by that blizzard but I do remember the news reports of it on national TV and in the papers.

    Some years ago I purchased a postcard featuring scenes from that blizzard in a village in Leicestershire.

    I have only seen snow like that in Canada, in the last 20 years at any rate.

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    • 2 weeks later...
    Posted
  • Location: Sedgley / Dudley - West Midlands - 757ft (219m) asl
  • Location: Sedgley / Dudley - West Midlands - 757ft (219m) asl

    just joined here!!!

    Yes I remember that snow....living in sedgley nr dudley so fairly high ground.

    can remember it being pretty severe!!!

    that winter also had the heavy snows of feb 1991 - again pretty heavy snow.

    since then its snowed several times nearly as bad in the early/mid 90s.....last few years been boring though even this week hasnt been nothing to note - prob 2-4 inches at the moment.

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    • 4 weeks later...
    Posted
  • Location: Llanwnnen, Lampeter, Ceredigion, 126m asl (exotic holidays in Rugby/ Coventry)
  • Location: Llanwnnen, Lampeter, Ceredigion, 126m asl (exotic holidays in Rugby/ Coventry)

    Heaviest snowfall I have witnessed in my life! 31cm measured in the east of Coventry. Found some photos from other parts of the city where it was even deeper:

    Very deep snow Coventry 1990

    Allesley, Coventry 1990 snow

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    • 1 year later...
    Posted
  • Location: Knowle, Solihull - 400ft (122m) ASL
  • Location: Knowle, Solihull - 400ft (122m) ASL

    I remember this very well. This and the Feb 91 easterly a few weeks later are certainly the biggest snow events I can recall in my lifetime. It's odd that the winter of 90/91 never seems to be mentioned alongside the "classic winters" such as 46/47 and 62/63, presumably these were two isolated mega-events in an otherwise average season?

    We had three large conifers in the front garden, and the snow was so heavy it weighed down their branches and 'unpeeled' them like bananas. In fact the biggest conifer was so badly damaged it never recovered and had to be taken down the following spring.

    Bish

    Edited by Bishop Brennan
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    Posted
  • Location: Evesham, Worcs, Albion
  • Location: Evesham, Worcs, Albion

    Needless to say, I was living in East Anglia at the time so missed it all ...... :whistling:

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    Posted
  • Location: Balsall Common CV7
  • Location: Balsall Common CV7

    Remember this well, I was unable to get my car off the drive for the next three days (East Coventry at that time). As noted above, since the winter of 90/91 not seen the depth of snow anything like that day in December 1990. Best I've had since then is the 9 inches recorded Feb 18th 2010.

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    Posted
  • Location: Aldridge, West Midlands, 161m ASL
  • Weather Preferences: All the Interesting stuff
  • Location: Aldridge, West Midlands, 161m ASL

    This snow event always stands out in my mind not just for the depth of snow, but because its the only time I've seen (or heard) thundersnow, it was remarkable.

    Edited by phil b
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    Today is the 20th anniversary of this memorable snowstorm. I was in Stoke-on-Trent at the time and it was the last time I experienced genuine blizzard conditions at low altitude. In parts of Hanley there was over a foot of snow which drifted on parked cars giving them extended wings like batmobiles.

    One of the most well known images is the oft repeated video of John Motson stood in the snow in the middle of the pitch at Wycombe Wanderers.

    What struck me was the sharp cut-off of snowfall on it's north western edge. A caller to one of the Saturday morning tv shows replied that there was only a couple of inches just up the road in Northwich, and in the afternoon the televised rugby league from Widnes showed only a few flakes in the wind, but no accumulated snow.

    Although there was some severe cold later in the winter, this particular fall thawed quite quickly and had mostly cleared by the end of the week.

    Forget the protracted dry cold that most of us have had recently and possibly again next week, I would much rather have a one off event like this.

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    Posted
  • Location: Solihull, West Midlands. UK
  • Location: Solihull, West Midlands. UK

    Blimey! 20 years ago.

    Doesn't seem all that long ago really. Still quite fresh in my mind. :)

    What began as a front coming down from the north on the Friday afternoon/early evening produced heavy rain but with the onus being that it was expected to turn to sleet, then eventually snow as the cold northerly blast undercut to the rear of the front.

    I remember going to bed at around midnight on the Saturday morning and when I awoke at around 9.00am, I most certainly did not expect to see what I did.

    One foot of level snow in white-out conditions.

    The front and its associated PPN moving down from the north spent most of the day stuck over The Midlands, East Wales and East Anglia and as soon as the snow moved on and skies began to clear, I could see bright green flashes to my east. Figuring it was lightning, this was not the case as there are overhead power lines over that way so I'm guessing it was those and the weight of the wet snow.

    I didn't think I'd see anything of the sort again for a very long time but just two months later, and as mentioned by another forum member, February 1991. Pretty much the same in snow depth but spread over a longer duration.

    But since February 1991, nothing has even come close since.

    Memories indeed. :D

    Phil.

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    • 1 year later...
    Posted
  • Location: Stoke Gifford, Bristol
  • Weather Preferences: Snow, Thunderstorms, Heat Waves, Tornadoes.
  • Location: Stoke Gifford, Bristol

    Yep, I was there. 7 years old with my 4 year old brother stuck in my Dads Cavalier on the A45 outside Coventry.

    Please give me another one of these events!!!

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    • 3 months later...
    Posted
  • Location: North York Moors
  • Location: North York Moors

    This December 1990 snowstorm was (here) a carbon copy of the snow on Tuesday 3rd/Wednesday 4th April.

    Both occasions saw severe damage due to snow loading on power lines that took many days to fully repair.

    The good thing about it happening in April is the longer days and relatively dry ground conditions are helpful to the repair teams.

    1833529cables.jpg

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    Posted
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts
  • Weather Preferences: Rain/snow, fog, gales and cold in every season
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts

    In this area the greatest damage during the 1990 snowstorm was between 100 and about 180m where the snow was very heavy and very sticky. Above 200m or so, and particularly above 300m, the snow was fine and powdery as the temperature remained below 0c throughout and there was little or no damage.

    The snow on Wednesday caused tree damage between 150 and 280m; above that level the snow was powdery apart from a short spell very early on when the temperature was just above 0c.

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    Posted
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District South Pennines Middleton & Smerrill Tops 305m (1001ft) asl.
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District South Pennines Middleton & Smerrill Tops 305m (1001ft) asl.

    This December 1990 snowstorm was (here) a carbon copy of the snow on Tuesday 3rd/Wednesday 4th April.

    Both occasions saw severe damage due to snow loading on power lines that took many days to fully repair.

    The good thing about it happening in April is the longer days and relatively dry ground conditions are helpful to the repair teams.

    1833529cables.jpg

    Had the same probs here 4wd, with a few trees down and big branches snapping through the weight of the snow and overhead cables sagging, the power was flicking on and off during the early hours of Wed morning , although as TM says it did turn a little more powdery as the night went on due to lower temps.

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    • 6 months later...
    Posted
  • Location: Knowle, Solihull - 400ft (122m) ASL
  • Location: Knowle, Solihull - 400ft (122m) ASL

    I remember this very well. This and the Feb 91 easterly a few weeks later are certainly the biggest snow events I can recall in my lifetime. It's odd that the winter of 90/91 never seems to be mentioned alongside the "classic winters" such as 46/47 and 62/63, presumably these were two isolated mega-events in an otherwise average season?

    We had three large conifers in the front garden, and the snow was so heavy it weighed down their branches and 'unpeeled' them like bananas. In fact the biggest conifer was so badly damaged it never recovered and had to be taken down the following spring.

    Bish

    I've just come across this wonderful picture taken the following morning by my brother, which demonstrates both the snow depth and also the tree damage which was so prevalent everywhere. Amazing how even the branches of the poplar trees in the distance are mangled and broken, purely because of the weight of the snow.

    You can also see what I meant about the 'unpeeled banana' effect regarding the nearby conifers.

    Bish

    post-13544-0-00838700-1349987587_thumb.j

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    Posted
  • Location: Manchester Deansgate.
  • Weather Preferences: Heavy disruptive snowfall.
  • Location: Manchester Deansgate.

    I lived in the West Midlands then, on balance i would have to say that this would be third on my all time list of stonking dumpings, the only time i have heard proper thundersnow, a huge crack of thunder about 3 or 4 am in the middle of the night on the friday night / saturday morning.

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