Schools and commuters hit by snow

Mid Devon Star: Traffic on a snowy M42 motorway in Derbyshire Traffic on a snowy M42 motorway in Derbyshire

Schools are closed and transport struggling to cope as Britain continues to suffer in the grip of winter.

A layer of snow and icy conditions proved hazardous for motorists in the Monday morning rush while rail and air services continued to be hit.

Thousands of children got an extra day off as schools remained closed in counties to the north and east of London. In some cases, parents were asked to bring shovels to help clear paths to enable them to open.

Virgin Trains warned of some cancellations in its services between London and Birmingham and the North West, while services into London King's Cross were also affected. Eurostar, First Capital Connect, Southeastern, Southern and South West Trains were all facing disruption.

There were delays on some London Underground lines, mainly because of late finishes to engineering work, while the bad weather caused hold-ups on the London Overground service.

Heavy snowfall closed two major roads across the Pennines, the A628 Woodhead Pass and the A66 between Brough and Bowes. The Highways Agency said both routes would be closed for some hours and advised drivers to find alternative routes across the Pennines.

At Heathrow, some 10% of flights were expected to be cancelled, particularly after 4pm when visibility is expected to be low. Passengers were advised to check the status of their flights before travelling to the airport.

One person was killed in Essex in an accident on the A12 in Essex on Sunday night, and drivers were being warned to take extra care.

A teenager was left fighting for his life after suffering head injuries in a sledging accident in Middlesbrough and a man was taken to hospital in Kent with broken bones in his face when he was racially attacked after confronting a group of youngsters throwing snowballs at him.

A woman, believed to be in her 20s, died after being found collapsed in the snow. She was discovered by a man walking his dog in Church Meadow, Deal, Kent, at 7.30am on Sunday and pronounced dead at the scene.

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