GALLERY: Snow storm hits Saffron Walden

HEAVY snowfall across the region has forced schools to close and disruption on the roads. Plummeting temperatures and snow flurries are expected to continue throughout the day creating further problems on the highways. Essex was the second hardest hit cou

HEAVY snowfall across the region has forced schools to close and disruption on the roads.

Plummeting temperatures and snow flurries are expected to continue throughout the day creating further problems on the highways.

Essex was the second hardest hit county and almost 300 schools have been forced to close due to staff shortages, dangerous surfaces and power cuts.

A Met Office spokesman said: "By day it won't get above one or two degrees and that carries on through Saturday and Sunday, staying with temperatures a couple of degrees above freezing by day and down to minus five at night."

The blizzard conditions swept in from Russia and Scandinavia and the belt of snow showers will move northwest, across Northern Ireland, western and northern Scotland and into Wales and northwest England.

Although the bookies are slashing their odds for a white Christmas, the Met Office says it is still too early to predict whether the snow will continue into late next week.

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