Storm Arwen batters Harrogate bringing snow and fallen debris as weather forecasters predict more to come on Saturday afternoon

Harrogate has felt the full force of Storm Arwen overnight with damage caused to property, trees being felled and snow causing difficulty on the roads and pavements.

Saturday, 27th November 2021, 9:33 am
Updated Saturday, 27th November 2021, 9:42 am

Gusts of up to 90mph were expected in some areas of the country as the Met Office issued a Red Warning - its strongest form of weather warning - for much of the north east coastline.

Harrogate was issued with the slightly less aggressive Amber Warning on Friday and is now subject to a Yellow Warning as high winds continue to cause problems, and the forecast is for more snow to fall on Saturday afternoon as temperatures drop to freezing point.

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We may not have been at the eye of the storm, but there was still significant damage across the region overnight.

Emergency services were on alert throughout the evening as a window fell from the top floor of Harrogate Tower into Parliament Street, a lamp post was blown over in the town centre, trees were damaged on the Stray, Penny Pot Lane was closed due to a tree blocking the road and a bus stop on Wetherby Road was smashed by falling debris.

Even the sign welcoming people into Harrogate on Knaresborough Road was snapped in half by the vicious winds.

One of the large beech trees at Ripley Castle was felled during the strong winds last night. This picture was sent in by Sir Thomas Ingilby.

Many events had already been cancelled and sites closed ahead of Saturday morning as the Met Office warnings were heeded, including the closure of Fountains Abbey and the weekly Harrogate ParkRun also fell victim of the weather with organisers tweeting: "Nobody wants a tree on their head so we are cancelled today. Sorry folks it’s just not safe for our runners or volunteers to go ahead this morning. Stay safe, have a wonderful weekend and we’ll see you soon."


The Met Office forecast for Saturday states that high winds will continue through much of the day and that there remains the prospect of flying debris and damage to trees and property.

There is also the prospect of more snow with a 60% chance of snowfall at 2pm rising to an 80% chance of heavy flurries between 4pm and 6pm.

This image of a fallen tree in Harrogate was sent in by Kate Caine.


North Yorkshire residents are still being advised to travel only if absolutely necessary as winds are forecast to continue on Saturday morning, although they are expected to subside as the day moves on.

The roads had a covering of snow in the early hours with more likely to fall in the afternoon and some debris was still causing some routes to be blocked.

The Met Office forecast is for the stormy weather to continue throughout much of Saturday and for some heavy snow to hit Harrogate in the late afternoon and early evening.

Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Access, said: “All our North Yorkshire Highways teams are in place and will be able to respond to any conditions that arise over the weekend.

"In addition, the 100 farming contractors that support our winter highways operation are primed to help if required, particularly if the strong winds exacerbate any impact of snow through drifting.

“We would ask anyone planning to travel to consider whether their journey is absolutely necessary.

"If they do need to travel, they should be alert to the conditions, drive accordingly and leave extra time for their journey.

"If they do need to travel, they should be alert to the conditions, drive accordingly and leave extra time for their journey.

“High winds can affect vehicle handling, so drivers need to adjust their driving by slowing down and being careful when passing high-sided vehicles on exposed roads.

"They should also give extra space to cyclists and motorcyclists when overtaking.

"Drivers should make sure their vehicles are prepared for winter.”


If you have any images of damage or reports of issues that we can share with the community please email them to [email protected]