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Fight the freeze this winter

Am I wrong? Didn't it used to be cold and snowy in winter and warm and sunny in summer? The weather's turned boring. It just feels like it's mild all of the time!

Of course, I am wrong. Our weather's always been a bit strange. Britain's warmest ever December temperature was 18 ºC, recorded over 60 years ago in 1948*. The coldest December temperature was more recent - minus 27 ºC in 1995**.
So let's not be fooled into thinking it's always mild in winter. We can have a cold-snap any time. And let's just hope it doesn't happen during the Christmas break.
This really would be the worst time. A lot of businesses shut down for Christmas. And some forget to take the right precautions. 
They turn the heating off, instead of down. They don't visit their premises regularly to make sure everything is OK. They don't realise that people, machines and other equipment generate heat while working. They forget that sprinkler systems need special attention. And some don't even know where their mains water stop valve is.
When their pipes freeze and burst, they've got major problems on their hands.
Don't let it happen to you. A few simple precautions can help prevent burst pipes. Leave the heating turned down (enough to protect from frost), make regular checks, take special care when it comes to sprinklers and find out where that stop valve is.
Now I've mentioned it, the chances are there won't be a big freeze this Christmas. But with our weather, you never know.
* Source - TORRO (Tornado & Storm Research Organisation)
** Source - Met Office (

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