Dozens forced to sleepover at IKEA during snowstorm

Staff and customers were forced to stay overnight during a snowstorm. Photo: Twitter

Staff and customers were forced to stay overnight during a snowstorm. Photo: Twitter

It sounds like the premise of a Christmas movie sponsored by IKEA, but this Danish snowstorm was the real deal.

At least 25 people were forced to spend the night in the IKEA showroom at Aalborg on Wednesday (local time) after being snowed in when a storm hit northern Denmark, the BBC reports.

The situation was less than ideal, of course, but the location was fortuitous.

Luckily there was plenty of bedding to go around and staff opened the dining hall to keep everyone from going hungry.

The IKEA store manager, Peter Elmrose, told AFP on Thursday morning the roads were too dangerous to drive on, leaving six customers and about two dozen staff unable to get home.

“It was too dangerous to go outside and we couldn’t make our employees take those risks and then as there were six customers left, we invited them too,” he said.

He told local newspaper Nordjyske they slept on the couches and beds in the showroom.

“This is certainly a new situation for us,” he said.

Erik Bangsgaard was shopping in the store when the weather got bad.

He told the Ekstra Bladet newspaper he and his wife appreciated the hospitality under the circumstances.

“We gathered in the canteen, where we got food and drink, and there was television,” Mr Bangsgaard said.

“There was nothing we could do about the situation. We were just really happy to get shelter.”

A breakfast of cinnamon rolls and coffee was also provided in the morning.

During the same storm, which brought falls of up to 30 centimetres to the city of Aalborg, 300 people were also stranded at the airport.

It comes after heavy snowfall in Yorkshire trapped dozens of patrons inside a British pub for three nights last week. They have since been freed.

tan hill inn snow

Snow was piled high against the pub – with roads in the area impassable. Photo: AAP

Last Friday, 61 people were trapped in the Tan Hill Inn in the Yorkshire Dales during Storm Arwen.

Some guests claimed they didn’t want to leave after enjoying the 17th-century hotel’s hospitality.

They slept on makeshift beds and mattresses on the floor, and were treated to films on a projector screen, a quiz night and a buffet meal.

Oasis tribute band Noasis were among those stranded and made the best of things by providing musical entertainment.

The pub’s general manager, Nicola Townsend, 51, told the PA news agency during the ordeal: “It’s just been lovely and everyone is in really good spirits – it’s a really good atmosphere.

“They’ve formed quite a friendship – like a big family is the best way I can describe it.

“One lady actually said ‘I don’t want to leave’.”

On Saturday night, guests thanked the seven members of staff stuck inside with them by presenting them with a jar filled with about £300 ($A562) in cash.

On Sunday, the pub laid on a traditional lunch before guests and staff work together to decorate the bar for Christmas and prepare for an evening of karaoke.

Ms Townsend, from Leyburn, said she feels many of those stranded – including herself – would stay in touch long after they had been freed.

They first realised they were trapped after a blizzard on Friday, she said.

“The blizzards were horrendous, how the snow was drifting, it was going all the way up to almost the bedroom windows,” she said.

Most of the guests were able to leave on Monday, but the last two guests decided to spend an extra night and left the pub on Tuesday.

-with agencies

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