THE Cotswolds was among the worst-affected parts of the country as the Beast from the East delivered freezing temperatures and huge snow drifts.

Storm Emma caused chaos from Thursday, through the weekend and into Monday, as red warnings (the highest possible weather warning) were issued in Gloucestershire.

Heavy snow and sub-zero temperatures saw road closures, cars abandoned, cancellations to bus and rail services, hospital closures and cancellations to postal and waste collection services.

The adverse weather conditions did however bring out the best out of residents, with many stories of generosity and heroism emerging.

Adrian Tugwell and his three-year-old son Noah came to the rescue with their tractor to help clear the way for the ambulances struggling to reach patients during the storm and allow people to make their way to Cirencester Minor Injuries Unit.

Emergency Nurse Practitioner Jess Curd, described Adrian as a “true ice hero to the NHS” but the Agricultural Contractor felt he just did what anyone else would have done.

“It’s just something you do instinctively,” said Adrian.

“I was surprised the highways authorities didn’t do anything because surely hospitals should be priority.

“The Minor Injuries Unit have fixed me up before, so I felt like I owed them.”

Tugwell Contracting, based on Tetbury Road near Cirencester, were out helping the community throughout Storm Emma’s stint and it wasn’t just the hospital that benefitted.

“We cleared roads in Cirencester, Minchinhampton and Dursley as well because a lot of them weren’t gritted.”

Elsewhere, Cotswold Balloon Safari worked tirelessly over the weekend to help transport people across the region.

The Malmesbury based hot-air balloon operators, offered lifts to anyone who needed one in their fleet of 4x4’s, working for as many as 13 hours a day.

Owner Mike Jennings, chief crew member Simon Bell and their team drove nurses, carers and people who were stranded. Mike was keen to help out the community and felt making the most of his resources was a no brainer.

“We have the Land Rovers sitting there so it made sense to make the most of the resource we had,” he said. “The advice was to stay in but some people had no choice such as the district nurses and care workers we drove. There was also someone who worked for the Met Office who was stuck in Exeter and the heating went off at his home, leaving his pregnant wife in the cold so we took some logs and fire-lighters so she could have some heat.”

Local farmers around the Cotswolds have also been praised for clearing the numerous treacherous country lanes as communities across the the region came together to help clear the snow.