Northern Ireland

Elderly County Derry farmer snowed in for five days

Brendan Kelly in snow at his farm
Image caption Brendan Kelly said he had been snowed in for four days

Northern Ireland Water has sent workers to clear snow from the laneway of an elderly County Londonderry farmer.

Brendan Kelly, who is 67, had been snowed in for five days following heavy snow on Friday.

Neighbours on a quad bike brought food and provisions to his house in Banagher in the Sperrin mountains on Tuesday.

The laneway, which leads to Banagher Dam, is owned by Northern Ireland Water.

Mr Kelly said he had been unable to get out of his house, or reach his animals, following heavy snow on Friday.

"This weather come along, and that was serious altogether for two nights and a full day," he said.

"It was very ugly. Definitely wild."

Graham Moore, a neighbouring farmer, was among those who brought bread and milk to Mr Kelly, his wife, and daughter.

He said the three mile journey on a quad bike from his own farm through heavy snow was treacherous.

Mr Kelly said he had not been able to get out of his house for four days.

"It feels lonely," he said.

"As long as there's electricity you're not so bad.

"You have television and all that but you can't get out anywhere. You feel closed in. It's wild."

Some of his animals were visible at a distance but he had not been able to get close enough to them to check their condition.

The weather was making him feel anxious.

"The night's sleeping is the problem. You're thinking about what the morning's going to bring."

He studies the weather forecast for signs of better weather.

"It worries me," he said.

"I've been worried a lot in my life. I would like to see a nice slow thaw coming, so that there's no flooding.

"If it doesn't thaw there's going to be real tight times. Really tough."

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