Severe weather continues to cause havoc across much of northern Europe as airports announce delays and cancellations and Eurostar says it expects services to be disrupted through the weekend. Gatwick Airport, the second busiest in the UK, has had to close as workers struggle to clear snow from the runways.

Air France-KLM said it would not be running any services out of Amsterdam because runways were clogged with snow and Dublin said it would be suspending services for the same reason. Although there was disruption at London City, Geneva and Edinburgh, some services did manage to operate.

Stewart Wingate, chief executive of Gatwick Airport, said that although the snow had finally started to ease off, disruption to flights was still likely. In an effort to avoid a repeat of last year’s breakdowns under the channel, Eurostar has introduced speed restrictions as well as cancelling a number of services between London, Paris and Brussels.

The UK’s busiest airport, Heathrow, said services were continuing as normal but warned passengers that there could be delays because of disruption at other European airports. Weather forecasters in the UK predict that the bad weather could continue well past the weekend as around eight inches of snow fell on Hampshire, Kent, Sussex and London.

Spokesman for the Automobile Association, Paul Watters, said the rescue service had received 18,000 calls for assistance yesterday. In the last six days he said there had been 100,000 calls from motorists. Because heavy snowfall has recently hit the south east, commuters are being warned of severe delays to train services.