Chichester’s ‘Big Freeze’ that arrived a decade ago

A thick carpet of snow descended on the area as the heaviest snowfall in 20 years arrived in 2010.

Wednesday, 8th January 2020, 12:43 pm
North Mundham villagers and friends decided to visit East Dean the fun way, over the hill and down the valley with just a few bruises along the way.

Dubbed ‘The Big Freeze’ The city of Chichester, towns, and villages were turned into a picturesque winter wonderland and during the evening many people donned their hats, gloves and scarves to venture outside and take an evening stroll among the fast-falling flakes.

People of all ages braved the weather to have fun making snowmen, and there were several interesting creations to be found sitting and standing in the city centre. Across the area excited groups of people gathered for a good-natured snowball fight out in the streets while other groups headed to Priory Park in Chichester.

For some young children it was the biggest snowfall they had ever seen, with the snow so thick roads became indistinguishable from pavements. The area saw people awake to a blizzard as snow continued to blanket the area and for many children it meant a day off school to play outside.

However ‘The Big Freeze’ sent a chill down the spine of the Chichester economy. As temperatures plummeted so did the profits of many of the area’s businesses and shops.

With many residents trapped in their villages and having difficulty getting on the road, most decided to stay home, with the footfall figure of city-centre shoppers at just 5,989 people which was 22,000 less than the average at the time.

Many shops decided to close or operate with minimal staff.