SNOW UPDATE: Local sporting fixtures badly hit by freezing conditions

Billingshurst's pitch at Jubilee Fields was under a light dusting of snow this afternoon.
Billingshurst's pitch at Jubilee Fields was under a light dusting of snow this afternoon.

Snow and freezing temperatures have led to a large number of sporting postponements over the weekend as a result of unfit pitches and safety concerns.

With more snow forecast for the south-east it looks like plenty of the weekend’s fixtures will fall by the wayside.

Not only are there concerns that pitches will be unplayable, but worries over travel safety for players, officials and supporters.

Football wise, among those who made an early decision were Horsham, who gave up hope on Friday morning of hosting lowly Ashford Town in the Bostik League South Division.

A club statement read: “Although the pitch itself is reportedly playable, concerns over travel difficulties for our opponents and match officials as well as our own players, supporters and officials, has prompted an early decision to be made.

“Details of the rearranged date will be announced as soon as it is known.

“Sadly, tonight’s U16s Arun & Chichester League Invitation Cup final between Horsham and Bognor Regis has also fallen victim to the weather, with Arundel’s Mill Road pitch frozen.”

The Southern Combination League programme has also been badly hit. Matches involving our three local Premier Division teams are already off.

Horsham YMCA’s top-of-the-table clash at Gorings Mead has been postponed, along with Loxwood’s home clash with Eastbourne Town and Broadbridge Heath’s trip to Pagham.

A YM spokesman wrote: “Sadly the weather has beaten us as our matches at home to Chichester City in a top of the table clash. Our reserves visit to picturesque Arundel are both postponed.

“Wrap up warm folks and keep your eye on other local fixtures for your football fix this weekend.”

In Division 1, Billingshurst’s trip to Wick is off, but Storrington v Selsey and Steyning Town v Midhurst & Easebourne is still on.

With Steyning having a 3G surface at The Shooting Field, they are hopeful that they may be able to play their fixtures.

A spokesman said: “We will be waiting until the morning before making a decision on our home league match with Midhurst. Currently snowing here but pitch was fine until about an hour ago.

“We also have to consider the ability of our opponents to travel as well.

League officials sent guidance to all clubs and match officials advising that – in a break with tradition – fixtures can be called off ahead of Saturday morning if it makes sense for all parties.

A West Sussex League and Worthing & Horsham Sunday League wipeout is also expected.

For local rugby, Horsham were scheduled to be at home to Heathfield & Waldron, but all senior fixtures at the club have been called off due to frozen pitches.

Pulborough are due to travel to Old Alleynians in London 2 South East.

The division’s fixtures are details of postponements can be found here.

Horsham Hockey Club’s game at Oxford University in South Premier Division 1 could also be at risk.

The division’s postponements will be updated here.