Hundreds of children were sent home from school and drivers were left slipping, sliding and fuming as heavy snowfall hit Kirklees and Calderdale.

Up to eight inches (20cm) of snow was dumped on the district as showers swept in across the day.

There was some snow overnight – particularly on higher ground – but the heaviest falls hit the morning commute and sheer volume of traffic caused main roads to snarl up.

Two of the worst affected were Leeds Road in Huddersfield and the Elland bypass, which was down to one lane in places.

Snow falling in Wakefield Road, Dalton, Huddersfield.
 

Schools reacted to the snow through the day and closures mounted. At least 26 schools in Kirklees were shut for at least part of the day with another 25 or so in Calderdale.

Helme CE Junior and Infant School and Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School in Sowerby Bridge were the first to close.

As the weather deteriorated and the roads became clogged, more schools followed suit.

Stainland Bowling Green Primary School and Cragg Vale Junior and Infant School shut the doors when it became clear that hot school lunches would not be delivered.

More, including Kirklees College, Salendine Nook High School and Wilberlee Junior and Infant School, called it a day at lunchtime.

Many commuters were late for work and others missed vital appointments.

We've been updating a liveblog with the latest school closures and the situation on the roads plus the rail and bus route information.

Disabled Jane Fairbank, 56, of Oakes, set out by taxi at 9.35am for a hospital appointment at Calderdale Royal Hospital in Halifax but didn’t get far.

The driver avoided snow-hit side streets but gave up in New Hey Road, dropping Mrs Fairbank and her wheelchair at a bus stop.

Mrs Fairbank had no beef with the driver and managed to persuade another taxi firm to get her home.

“It wasn’t the driver’s fault,” she said. “It soon became clear we weren’t going to get to Halifax.

“It was a total white-out and there is nothing more scary than cars skidding. If professional taxi drivers can’t get through, no-one can. I blame Kirklees. Where is the gritting?”

Examiner reader Simon Normington captured the mayhem caused by the snow at Bolster Moor.

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It was revealed this week that Kirklees Council has halved the amount of grit spread on the roads.

People have slammed the council for a “second class” service when it comes to keeping the roads clear.

Buses and trains were delayed too and there was drama on some of the steeper routes.

There was a close shave for a double decker and its passengers when the bus skidded completely sideways in Causeway Side at Linthwaite.

 

And a driver had a lucky escape after a smash at Bank End, Bolster Moor, which left the front end of their car badly crunched.

The evening commute wasn’t much better as workplaces also closed early to allow staff to get home – but that only caused more tailbacks on the roads.

But Examiner weather expert Paul Stevens predicted the snowfall and said it would die out overnight.

Paul said it would be icy on Thursday but there would be a “very slow thaw” with temperatures of about 3C.

“On Friday a band of rain and sleet will come in which might produce icy surfaces,” he said. “Saturday will see sleety showers and it will turn mild, wet and windy on Sunday.

“It will be quite stormy through next week to the end of January.”

The freezing weather could make a comeback in February, however.