Oxford’s freezing spires

first_imgThe county is now on a national priority list to get more grit and salt delivered, but the Oxfordshire County Council admitted that it had greatly reduced the amount that it has distributed.The Council blamed “increasing restrictions upon national supplies of salt to local authorities” and “the fact that more grit is needed on roads affected by snow, as opposed to frost” for the fact that the percentage of roads gritted had been cut from 43% to 29%. The Council also warns that it will not be regularly providing material for gritting pavements, focusing instead on clearing the main routes.Many services, such as waste and recycling collections, have been suspended or disrupted this week. Across the county, more than 200 schools have been shut, and Oxford Brookes was closed on Thursday. The Bodleian Library has been closing its doors at 5 pm for the last two days, but will resume normal opening hours from Monday. Services at the John Radcliffe Hospital are also expected to run as normal.Freezing weather was felt all of this week throughout Oxfordshire. On Tuesday night, the Met Office predicted that up to 12 inches of snow would fall across the county. The village of Benson, located 11 miles from Oxford, was the coldest place in the United Kingdom on Wednesday night, with the temperature falling to -18°C.The cold weather looks set to continue, with temperatures expected to remain below zero and more snowfall forecast for early next week. Disruptions caused by the snowy weather may cause problems for students returning to Oxford over the next few days, as Oxfordshire has been one of the worst affected counties in the freeze experienced throughout the UK.In spite of the colleges’ effort to clean out the snow, students arriving by car may encounter problems with parking. Keble and Balliol have updated their websites, warning that students will be unable to bring cars unto college grounds, and at Lady Margaret Hall car access will also be restricted. Some colleges have advised students to use public transport due to the state of the roads in the city.last_img read more