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Blood on the slopes in Primrose Hill

PUBLISHED: 12:59 05 February 2009 | UPDATED: 15:54 07 September 2010

Ben McPartland Tensions ran high on the slopes of Primrose Hill this week as thousands donned their winter warmers and took advantage of the biggest snowfall in a generation. Ugly scenes marred the picturesque views on Monday as gangs of youngsters armed

Ben McPartland

Tensions ran high on the slopes of Primrose Hill this week as thousands donned their winter warmers and took advantage of the biggest snowfall in a generation.

Ugly scenes marred the picturesque views on Monday as gangs of youngsters armed with snowballs clashed with Primrose Hill parents.

Scuffles broke out between a group of men who reacted after being pelted by the youths as they set off down the hill in a makeshift bobsleigh.

One young onlooker who witnessed the scenes said: "They just made a big deal out of it. They should have just thrown the snowballs back and then nothing would have happened, but they took it too seriously."

There was also a tense stand off between numerous parents who pleaded with the youngsters not to throw anymore snowballs.

Elsewhere on the slopes skiers and snowboarders took to north London's newest piste but had to avoid the cardboard boxes, washing baskets, bin liners and other implements which were being used as make-shift toboggans.

The snow was also stained with spots of blood as the numerous bumps and bruises caused by falls and sledge crashes mounted up throughout the morning.

Penny Newton from Swiss Cottage said: "There has been some carnage with the toboggans but they knew the snow was coming so they should have put in a chairlift on Primrose Hill.

"There was not enough grit out though. I want to know if places like Norway and Canada come to a standstill when there is a bit of snow."

Maj Kamran closed her Swiss Cottage hair salon for the day and headed to Primrose Hill to enjoy the snow.

"I have lost a day's business but you don't get this very often so you have to enjoy it," she said. "It's a once in a lifetime chance you get this kind of snow in London."

Babak Sohzabi, 18 said: "I don't remember this kind of snow in London before. We are just trying to get hold of any kind of sledge so we can get down this hill." David Harrison from St John's Wood said: "This is the first time I have been up here in the snow for 11 years. It will be gone next week so you might as well enjoy it."

Sabah Awan, a teaching assistant at Northbridge House, said: "I feel like I am in the Alps. It's so nice.

"Snow always puts a smile on my face. Some of the toboggans are a bit mad but if the authorities came up here and brought health and safety into it, it would ruin the fun for everyone.


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