After all The Composers has said in past blogs about the benign weather in Northumberland, he has had to eat his words (if not the snow!) when Composers at Woodlands looked more like Composers at Iceland (country not store!)
We were not the only area of the UK to suffer bad weather – but perhaps we had the unique distinction of having one of the longest traffic jams of all times on the A1 – over 25 miles long!! Those who know Composers will recall how near the Scottish border we are, so image a queue extending from the Border to Alnwick made up of cars, buses, coaches and HGV’s. Berwick soon became the ‘home from home’ for thousands of stranded people while the A1 remained closed thanks to numerous accidents, vehicles in ditches and HGV’s slewed across the (never wide enough at the best of times) A1 between the Border and Alnwick.
Church Halls, Pubs, Hotels, Shops and the local Leisure Centre opened up and catered (literally) for hundreds of people. Local supermarkets gave away food and drinks and volunteers from every sector of the community turned stranded strangers into friends with a warmth welcome and hot food and drink. Our favourite chip shop (Canon) cooked, and dispatched in a 4×4, hundreds of portions of fish and chips while Berwick folk opened homes to look after many travellers – what a huge, positive impact Berwick had on everyone! We had people telling us that they will be back for a holiday (when the weather improves!!) as they never knew how fabulous Berwick really is! Shhhhhhh…..don’t tell too many – they’ll all want to come!
Sadly, The Composer missed most of the excitement having spent 9½ hrs on Thursday 1st March getting between Berwick and Mid Lancashire on a route that is not recommended for the feint hearted (or those that don’t like driving through snow drifts over fields!!) Add to that a trip to Birmingham over the same weekend through more snow and a return to Berwick on the Sunday through freezing fog from Leeds to Berwick and you have an idea how glad The Composer was to be back.
Thankfully, guests have arrived with us to celebrate Easter and Composers at Woodlands is in full swing again. The weather has turned yet again and we see signs of spring which means that soon it will be shorts and T shirt weather again in Northumberland
No more snow, just a warm welcome for the foreseeable!!