Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

Bitter day as sugar factory virtually cut off by snow

Cantley is a village that is virtually cut off.

The main road in - a five mile stretch from the A47 east of Norwich - is kept clear in most weather conditions.

It's a crucial link for dozens of sugar beet lorries every day delivering to the British Sugar factory.

Beet lorries rescued in Cantley Credit: Simon Wright, ITV Anglia

This is not ordinary weather though. More than six inches of snow is being blown off the flat, open fields by high winds straight from Siberia.

It means that as fast as snow ploughs clear the roads they are covered in a fresh layer of the white stuff.

And they've cleared plenty of it. Villagers looked in amazement at it was piled three metres high at the end of Burnt House Road. They haven't seen it like this for 30 years.

Clearing the snow in Cantley Credit: Simon Wright, ITV Anglia

There were reports of up to 40 beet lorries being backed up on the B1140 between Cantley and the A47. It was a painfully slow process as they were towed around a bend on the edge of the village one at a time.

There was no way through for ordinary vehicles. Zoe Rope helps run the Heron Lea care home at Postwick. She was trying to get there to relieve staff who are working double shifts caring for the 13 residents.

Zoe Rope ((left) with Charmaine Brown Credit: Simon Wright, ITV Anglia

"No-one can get in to help so we've just got two staff who have been there since last night and the other two have been there since Tuesday. We're not going to get out of Cantley today to relieve them."

– Zoe Rope

"Following the heavy snow and strong winds over the last 48 hours, Cantley factory is currently inaccessible by road. For this reason and the continuing adverse weather conditions we have taken the decision to close for beet deliveries until after the weekend.If growers have any questions or concerns they should contact their area manager."

– Dan Green, Cantley Factory Manager, British Sugar
Towing cars to safety Credit: Simon Wright, ITV Anglia

Yesterday another resident Rob Brown used his 4x4 to pull out an ambulance that was taking a patient to hospital. Today even he hasn't tried to get out.

"There's no chance, with wide open fields it's just going to keep coming and coming until the wind stops. I think they're wasting diesel trying to clear it."

– Rob Brown
Rob Brown Credit: Simon Wright, ITV Anglia

Cantley is on the Norwich to Lowestoft rail line. But with the trains not running either, the 700 people that live in this Norfolk village are likely to be stuck there for some time yet.

More on this story