A heavy mantle of snow has spread over wide stretches Scotland to the highground of Ireland, Wales and north England in the wake of a major wintry stormstriking the British Archipelago.

As of Wednesday, heavy, wet snow lay more than one foot deep at Aviemore inthe upland of northern Scotland as snow continued to fall.

Over the nearby Highland, highest snowfall was easily twice as high, and highwinds made for blizzards of severe blowing and drifting snow. For instance, theski center at Aviemore reported at least 75 cm, or about 30 inches, of snow.

The cities of Aberdeen and Edinburgh both were covered by sloppy, wet snow, asthe storm also poured soaking rain throughout the coast and lowlands.

Deep snowcover of Scotland was echoed in the hills of Northern Ireland, wherethe site of Lough Fea, east of Omagh, lay buried beneath 15 inches of snow.

Uplands of Wales to the Pennines and Lake District fells of north England alsoweathered heavy windswept snowfall and blowing snow.

Impact of the snowstorm on transportation and utilities was marked.

The foul weather led to a bus crash near Wiston, in the snowy Southern Uplandof Scotland, that claimed the life of a child; at least 11 other were said tobe injured.

Loss of power to 22,000 homes in Scotland was reported on Tuesday. Vehiclestrandings were also reported.

In Northern Ireland, a spokesperson for Northern Ireland Electricity told of48,000 customers without power as of Wednesday.

The main road between the cities of Belfast and Derry was hit hard along thehills above Derry. About 300 people were said to have been rescued fromvehicles stuck in deep snow through the Glenshane Pass.

Elsewhere, London and other cities of England experienced cold rain andslashing wind, but little or no snow.

The wintry storm responsible for the severe weather since Monday will pullnorthward as it weakens on Thursday. This shift will put an end to thewidespread rain and upland snow on Wednesday night and Thursday.

Yet another storm, however, will overspread the British Archipelago on Fridaythrough Saturday. While its primary yield will be rain, this storm will be coldenough to bring snow to at least the higher hills.

Story by AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist Jim Andrews