Snow in the Roe and tales of woe

Enjoying some sleigh runs in Dungiven on Wednesday. (DERR1601SJ3)

Enjoying some sleigh runs in Dungiven on Wednesday. (DERR1601SJ3)

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The heaviest snowfall witnessed in recent years transformed the Roe Valley into a frozen winter wonderland with several feet of the white stuff falling in some areas.

While the wintry weather created picture postcard scenes in Dungiven, Greysteel, Limavady and Magilligan, it brought its fair share of problems.

Mervyn Nicholl, Gerard McGinley, Clare Harbinson and Noel Nicholl defied the  recent spell of snowy weather did nothing to dampen the spirit of the LCDI Meals on Wheels team. Despite constantly deteriorating conditions the team managed to deliver every single meal across the Borough. (DERR1601SJ6)

Mervyn Nicholl, Gerard McGinley, Clare Harbinson and Noel Nicholl defied the recent spell of snowy weather did nothing to dampen the spirit of the LCDI Meals on Wheels team. Despite constantly deteriorating conditions the team managed to deliver every single meal across the Borough. (DERR1601SJ6)

The snow and ice brought slippy conditions on Tuesday and Wednesday for drivers trying to make their way to work, while hundreds of children throughout the borough had an unexpected day off as schools were forced to close.

At one stage on Wednesday, approximately 1,000 homes in the Limavady area were without power. However, NIE was unable to say if that was due to the weather. Most people had power back within a few hours.

Among those happy to see the lights back on and the snow gone was a young mum and her baby son in Drum, outside Dungiven, who had been stuck indoors with no electricity for several hours.

James Mullan from Magilligan said while the snow is “nice for the wains”, it’s not so pleasant for people working outdoors, such as farmers.

Ryan McLaughlin from Bellarena said the snow on rural roads was bad, but the main roads were passable. He said the “footpaths in Limavady could have been doing with extra attention but that chestnut has been visited before and we’re back to that again, and there doesn’t seem to be much difference”.

The snow created difficult trading conditions for many businesses.

Helen McKenna who runs interior store ‘Finishing Touches Too’ in Limavady said the town was very quiet.

“Business has been quiet. People aren’t coming into the town because the roads are so bad. My family is out in Glack and they just can’t get into the town because the roads are so bad,” said Helen. “I’ll be glad to see the back of it.”

In Dungiven, Dympna McCloskey at Millars Curiosity Corner did a bumper trade on sleighs.

“There was a big demand on the sleighs and it’s a good bonus for us after Christmas. Long may it last,” said Dympna, revealing the shop sold more than 130 plastic sleighs on Tuesday.

As suddenly as it arrived, the snow was gone.

For Limavady PSNI, Neighbourhood Sgt Ian Hunt said; “The snow has disappeared but not before more damage was caused to a few more vehicles. Not before one youth got caught causing damage to a car windscreen by a Limavady police officer who was fitter and faster that they were. We are fitter that you think!”

While the snow was mostly gone on Thursday, many people travelling in from the Roe Valley into Derry faced a long and frustrating commute due to the closure of the Foyle Bridge. Some people reported taking as long as two hours to travel from Limavady to Derry city centre; a journey that usually takes 30 minutes.