Be prepared for a harsh winter gloved hand image

The holly trees are full of red berries. The leaves are burning brighter and falling late. The acorn shells are thick. The houses are full of spiders and the birds are leaving early. If old wives’ tales are anything to go by, we could be looking at a harsh winter ahead. How should the industrious housing professional best prepare for the cold? Joe Bradbury of Housing Association Magazine investigates.

Long-range weather forecasts claim Britain could be braced to face the coldest and harshest winter for almost a decade. The brutally cold weather is expected to be driven by a plunge in solar activity and the El Nino warming of the eastern Pacific Ocean, bringing the first snowfall as early as November and “potentially crippling snowfalls and ice storms” between Christmas and New Year.