How To Survive The Beast From The East: The Snowstorm Battering Britain


Written by Jack Blocker
03 Tuesday 03rd February 2015

For all the titillating images of dense snowfall blanketing a place in the Lake District where no one lives, there’ll be a million urban-dwellers tackling the more insipid effects of the season in our cities. Think sludge, black ice or train delays. Is there any way we can best the Beast from the East in the more populous areas of the country? As every other website is doling out features on the subject, we will too.


Many people across the country woke up to the sight of snow this morning. Snow forms when cloud droplets freeze into crystalline flakes. That may sound relatively harmless, but when millions of these all fall together onto the unprepared surfaces of the UK, its citizens come to a stand still. The most effective way to deal with 2mm of snow is to walk on the pavement in the manner you would during normal conditions. But this is key - reduce your speed and be careful.

This advice is doubly crucial if operating a bicycle, and even more so if behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. You may even see people slip on your journey home from work. Feel free to help them in these conditions and call medical services if they require it - but remember: The Beast shows no mercy, and neither should you.


The weary city traveller should be well-prepared for the consequences of snow on train and bus schedules. Although it may be hard to accept, many of your familiar services will be late and possibly cancelled entirely. The best thing to do to avoid such problems is to check travel updates before you leave the house. 

If you’re lucky, there will be another service that you can catch. You may even get a train delayed previous to your regular option, meaning you could still arrive on time or possibly even earlier. In a season as volatile and unexpected as this, surprises are common place and thrills as numerous as the falling flakes.


Snowfall is almost always indicative of colder temperatures. When inside, central heating and fireplaces can provide you with enough warmth to survive. Venture outside, however, and minimal clothing could render you sick - or worse. It may go against your better judgement, but wearing multiple layers is a good choice when walking around in snow.

I saw one man this morning who was wearing gloves, a hat, a scarf and both a jumper and a jacket. If they find his frozen body stricken in some god forsaken wood later today, I doubt he would have ended up there because of frostbite.

Cute animals in snow

Although there’s no exact science behind it, domestic animals tend to look cuter - and thus more photogenic - when they are frolicking in snow. Keep your eye out for the adorable dogs walking in your local park or cats lurking in your garden, because they may just add a little light to this bleak winter.

If you’re at work, it’s likely you’ll come across listicles and shareable content detailing cute animals in snow with a greater frequency than say, summertime. Enjoy it; it’s your reward for the hellish conditions you braved to be here.

Too many Romanians?

Regardless of the season, one question that concerns many Britons is the volume of Romanians and other eastern European immigrants in this country. While snow may not influence or alter your opinion on the subject, there’s no evidence to suggest it won’t cause others to launch into diatribes for or against these nationalities. Nonetheless, their feelings are probably not related to the weather, so don’t think de-icing your car will cause you to vote UKIP in the coming elections.

Despite this, some popular publications may choose to politicise a subject as inevitable as the changing seasons. For instance, the Mail Online has given an article featuring countless images of the recent snowfall the title, ‘Where are the gritters?’, tacitly suggesting a dissatisfaction with council services and public servants.

Did the Romanians take them?

Getting Home

Your return home from work can reveal problems to match your morning’s trip to the office. Fortunately, fewer people will be facing such rigid time-constraints, which means the ‘stress-factor’ will be reduced. Before leaving work, be sure to remember my previous tips. Wear layers, tread carefully and feel no obligation to assist anyone if you don’t feel comfortable doing so.

The Beast from the East is here. Lord have mercy if you fail to survive it.

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