As the weather starts to turn this week, the night’s draw in and long range forecasters speculate about snow in the coming months, we look back in the history books at the UK’s toughest winters
1979: coldest winter since ‘big freeze’ of 1962-63.
1962-63: ‘Big Freeze’ saw Thames freeze for first time since 1880 and Sheffield have 4ft of snow. It remains one of the coldest winters on record in the UK, with the coldest weather for 200 years and a 36-hour blizzard causing heavy drifting snow in most parts of the country.
1952: high death toll due to London smog.
1947: harsh winter weather across northern Europe from January to March with heavy snow.
1933: one of worst blizzards to ever hit the British Isles saw 48 hours of continuous snowfall.
1927: blizzard began on Christmas Day in the Midlands and Wales, resulting in some of heaviest snowfalls of 20th Century.
1836: huge blizzard and strong winds hit south, the Thames flooded and eight people were killed in an avalanche in Sussex.
1739-40: one of most severe winters in British history as part of so-called little ice age which lasted from 1350 to 1850.
1683–84: The Great Frost of 1683–84 is worst frost recorded in England with Thames freezing for two months solid.
1684: coldest winter in the English instrumental record.