London doesn’t cope well with properly cold weather. You would think, being a European capital, that the city would have some degree of familiarity with how to behave in the cold. But it doesn’t.


* when it snows, drivers have no idea how to drive anymore. Cars are abandoned at the side of the road, parked at jaunty angles. Or drivers spin their wheels helplessly in slushy pools of snow and ice, the tyres unable to gain any traction.

* when it’s freezing, the buses still have air con on. (The drivers don’t know how to switch it off, apparently.) You get on after waiting at a freezing bus stop, your feet getting numb and icy, only to get on the bus and have a cold draught pouring down on your head

* public transport can’t cope. Overground and underground trains are subject to delays (because let’s all pause and remember that more than 50% of London’s underground network is actually above ground out in the extremities of the lines.

* in mainland Europe, apparently the rule is you need to keep part of your front path clear of snow so people can pass safely. No one is London does this (unless they are mainland European). People trample the snow, it melts a little, it becomes ice, it becomes harder to remove and much harder to walk on.

* people in London say they hate snow. They hate the cold, the disruption. But secretly, everyone loves snow. You can tell this because at 11pm on Sunday night, after a few hours of heavy snow, people were out on the streets building snowmen, having snowball fights, making snow angels with their kids

11pm Sunday night

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