Students taking exams early next week can expect temperatures of 5°C (41°F), icy roads, intermittent sleet and an unreliable transport network.
According to the BBC’s forecast, King’s College London (KCL) students heading back to the Strand campus this week would be wise to bring a coat and umbrella, with “sleet showers and a moderate breeze” expected. The Met Office have issued a yellow alert for Greater London, warning of “Icy patches and wintry showers affecting some areas on Monday morning, leading to potentially slower journeys”.
Travel times across the city were already expected to be substantially extended next week, with strike action on London’s Tube network scheduled from 17.30 on Sunday 7 January to 12.00 on Friday 12 January. Bus and overland rail services were already predicted to be congested and overcrowded, with Transport for London (TfL) stating that those services not cancelled due to strikes “may be subject to last-minute changes and will be much busier than usual”. Reliability will likely fall even more in the expected weather conditions, with the Met Office warning that “roads and railways [are] likely to be affected” by the weather.
KCL have, however, confirmed that Assessment Period 1 will be continuing unaltered, despite thousands of students being scheduled to attend east London’s ExCeL Centre in the coming week. The university recommends that students take bus, District Light Rail (DLR) and Elizabeth line services to the Centre. Students who arrive late to exams are expected to be allowed into exam halls. One professor commented, “Face-to-face exams go ahead as normal. Apparently, you just need to get a bus (with the 12 million other people that live in London) or walk for hours.”
This has been the second-warmest year on record and London is yet to receive any substantial snow this winter, although forecasters have suggested that South London may receive its first snowfall of the year early next week. Full teaching at King’s resumes back on Friday 12 January, with slightly warmer weather conditions and a low chance of precipitation.