Big Freeze 1963

The actual date was 28th December 1962, a night I will never forget. Snow had been falling most of the day but by evening the wind had really increased creating a full blown blizzard, snow had started to build across the open fields surrounding Drayton-st-Leonard and had started to drift in exposed parts of the road.

Valour heaters in the casting shed had to be maintained, so I decided to drive early on that dreadful evening to D-S-L, about half way into the journey the road was blocked by a Bedford van stuck in a very high snow drift making the road impassable.  A young woman and a four year old boy were stuck inside and were desperate to reach D-S-l. I managed to carry young Johnathon on my shoulders and Diana and I walked across the frozen fields to the old vicarage, this was my introduction to the Cavendish family.

Robin Cavendish a tetraplegic on a ventilator was luckily at home and not in the van, that would have made the situation much more difficult and possibly dangerous.

The following day we had to use JCB diggers to extract vehicles from 7 ft high snowdrifts and the snow did not completely disappear till March the 8th 1963.