Snowfall the night of 3rd/4th January 2008 near Lisburn and Belfast, Northern Ireland

On the 3rd January 2008 the weather forecast from the UK Met Office was for a slight fall of snow over eastern parts of Northern Ireland during the evening and night.

This was not expected to be much of a problem.

What we actually experienced was rather different. The snowfall was heavier than is typical for this part of the world.

The snow started falling during the afternoon of Thursday, 3rd January. Just before midnight I measured a 20 cm depth on the lawn. There was no wind; the snow was falling vertically.

As I wasn't sleepy, I checked the snow a few times. Approximately three hours after I'd measured 20 cm I saw that the snowfall had almost stopped, so I went outside to measure. It was then 30 cm (12 ins). Of course this is not deep compared with what is normal in more northerly parts of the UK or elsewhere, but it is the deepest I have measured on my lawn since moving here over 34 years ago.

My attention was caught by two things, At about 3:20 a.m. I took some photos. The best vantage point was indoors looking through a window.

Early in the afternoon the snow had stopped falling and rain was forecast, so I took some more photos while the snow was still lying. Then I took more pictures later in the afternoon when the thaw was well under way.

Two days later, Sunday, 6th January, the snow had mostly so cleared I took more photos to compare with the snowy ones. It was then that I made another discovery about the effect of the snow — a large bush has been damaged.

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