More snow forecast for Leicestershire as big freeze sets in for the week
Drivers were facing icy conditions again this morning after snow continued to fall across Leicestershire for most of yesterday.
It came as forecasters warned more days of bitter weather lie ahead, with heavy snow expected to arrive on Thursday.
City and county gritting teams were out around the clock over the weekend.
In the city, more than 50 tonnes of grit are being used every day as the freezing temperatures continue. Teams were out yesterday gritting main and secondary roads, clearing city centre footways and gritting around schools and residential homes.
They also gritted around the Leicester Tigers stadium, where a full house watched the team beat Toulouse in a crucial Heineken Cup tie at Welford Road in blizzard conditions.
Head of highways Andy Thomas said yesterday: "The grit bins around the city are emptying as fast as we can fill them. We do ask that people use the grit on the pavements and to assist their neighbours and communities, and don't take it all for their own driveways."
Schools were expected to wait until this morning before announcing whether they would be closing for the day.
Mercury weatherman Dave Mutton said snow flurries are set to return tonight and tomorrow, with heavier snow expected to reach the county, having crossed from France, on Thursday.
"During the first part of this week, temperatures will struggle to go above 0C (32F) during the day and will be as low as –4C (25F) at night in both the city and county," said Dave.
"Major routes should remain clear, but ungritted roads in the back streets and in the villages could be a bit tricky."
The Met Office said average day time temperatures were likely to stay below freezing all week, with a wind chill factor making it feel as cold as –5C at night, and not much better during the day.
City mayor Peter Soulsby said: "We will continue to closely monitor the situation and ensure that council resources are used in the best way possible to keep the city moving."
Martin Fletcher, group manager of the city council's highway maintenance team, said: "We have enough grit in store to see us through two weeks of continuous snow, or 70 days of hard frost."
County Hall transport spokeswoman Lesley Pendleton said the county council's gritters were also out around the clock.
She said: "We will monitor the situation, including weather forecasts, closely over the next few days to ensure we are as prepared as we can be."
Flights at East Midlands Airport were not disrupted by the weather over the weekend, although people are being warned to check that everything is running smoothly before travelling.
Meanwhile, people across Leicestershire made the most of the snow over the weekend, taking to the countryside on skis, snowboards and sledges.
The weather proved a boon for shops which experienced a run on sledges, grit, shovels and brushes. People also were keen to do their bit for wildlife battling the weather by buying bird food.
The Glebe Garden Centre, in Countesthorpe, sold out of sledges even before yesterday's snowfall.
Owner Bernard Hanraads said: "We sold our entire stock of sledges by Saturday afternoon.
"We sold at least 100 and could have sold many more as people were ringing all Sunday asking if we had any left.
"We have also had people coming in buying bird food.
"They have also been asking for rock salt, shovels and brushes to clear paths and drives."
At Lutterworth country park, dozens of people of all ages enjoyed sliding down the slopes on their sledges.
Sarah Greaves, 44, was there with her daughters Maisie, 15, and Harriet, 10, and son Finley, four.
She said: "It's a very gentle hill in the park and a large number of us took the chance to have some fun."
Philippa Hill, 40, was there with son Jacob, six, and daughter Amelia, four.
She said: "A whole gang of us come here when it snows. There's a real community feeling, and it's great to behave like a child again!"
To stay up to date with the effects of the snow in the city, visit:
Keep an eye on the situation on Leicester's roads by going to:
People can also call 0116 252 7000.
To stay up to date with the effects of the snow in the county, call 0116 305 0001 or visit: