Schoolgirl showered by broken glass as tree falls into house during Storm Arwen

Gale force winds blew a tree onto a house and icy weather resulted in school closures as Storm Arwen left parts of the region counting the cost of damage and disruption.

Jessica Charlton outside the damaged house, in Blossom Gardens, in Silkmore, Stafford
Jessica Charlton outside the damaged house, in Blossom Gardens, in Silkmore, Stafford

In Stafford a family escaped injury after a tree toppled over at around 5am on Saturday while they were all asleep.

Two rear bedroom windows at the property, in Blossom Gardens, in Silkmore, were smashed resulting in a six-year-old schoolgirl being showered by broken glass.

Dean Charlton, aged 51,who was babysitting his four grandchildren at the property, said: "We were asleep when it happened. My granddaughter ran into my room to wake me up and tell me 'the window has been smashed'.

"I ran into the room and saw that a tree had fell onto the house. It was a really big shock.

"It has damaged the roof and back of the house, we've been told a tree surgeon can't do anything until permission has been granted.

"We took her to the hospital. She's been checked over and she is fine, we were told to keep an eye on her for concussion."

"My daughter and her family are currently sleeping in the one room because the children are too scared to stay in their own rooms after what happened."

Stafford-based housing association Homes Plus has confirmed that it is owns the property.

Meanwhile several schools were closed on Monday due to the effects of the weather conditions.

In Wolverhampton Long Knowle Primary, in Blackwood Avenue, was closed due to broken heating, and Bushbury Lane Academy was closed due to the weather.

In Sandwell two school sites were closed on safety grounds due to snow and ice conditions.

Lessons at Perryfields Academy, in Oldacre Road, Oldbury, moved online due to a "significant amount of ice and snow". Meanwhile frozen footpaths resulted in the closure of Oakham Primary School, in Darbys Hill Road, in Tividale.

The school tweeted: "We are forced to close today due to the amount of frozen paths and access to the site. Due to our locality, all of the melted snow has now frozen despite gritting yesterday and this morning.

"We have numerous areas of black ice and it is not safe for footfall. I have consulted with the full governing body and they have agreed to support this closure on health and safety grounds."

Gritters were out in force around the clock across the region as strong winds, snow and freezing temperatures struck.

With temperatures expected to remain low for some of the week and a risk of ice on the roads, drivers are being reminded to take particular care when out.

Staffordshire County Council highways boss Councillor David Williams said: “This was an incredibly busy weekend for our gritting crews and hill contractors who have been working around the clock since Friday evening to help keep the roads clear.

"It was all hands on deck, in what was extremely challenging conditions, with all available resources being deployed, including snow ploughs, tractor ploughs and all our gritters.

“It looks like the colder weather will be with us for a few more days this week so again I would like to remind motorists to please do all they can to keep themselves and other road users safe.

"Regardless of whether a road has been gritted, people need to slow down, drive to the conditions and allow more time for their journeys.”

The Met office issued a yellow weather warning for the whole of the West Midlands over the weekend.

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