These children spent days stuck in a school stranded by snow - and their plight made the front page of a national newspaper.

Back in February 1978, due to heavy snowfalls in Dorset these youngsters made the front page of the Daily Mail after returning from a school trip to London and finding themselves unable to return home.

The 15 fifth form youngsters became trapped in St Mary’s School, Puddletown, as drifts of snow up to 20ft deep surrounded the village. More than 20 of the children camped in the school staff room, wrapped in blankets and curtains.

Dorset Echo:

The village of Puddletown really rallied round, the article reports.

It said: “Puddletown (pop. 761) was determined to see that they would not suffer. The village store opened specially to provide food, the pub gave away pints of milk for tea, and offers of warm beds for the night came flooding in.”

The Daily Mail hired a helicopter and flew in to see how the youngsters were coping. For this picture taken from above they laid out the school’s flag - a yellow cross on a blue background - as a marker on an impromptu ‘airfield’ between the goalposts on the school football field.

Deputy headteacher Norman Wellstead said: “You’re the first outsiders we have seen since Saturday.

“We shall be relieved to get back to our homes but we owe every villager a tremendous thank you.”

The winter of 1978 saw a big freeze hit Dorset.

A snowy scene looking towards the Sidney Hall, Weymouth in 1978

February 1978 brought the heaviest snow since the big freeze of 1962-63.

Dorset Echo:

Snowfall on February 15 was followed by gales and blizzards on February 18, with at least six inches of snow in most of Dorset and areas cut off by drifts.

We're also sharing here more images of the bad weather, including a completely impassable road between Weymouth and Dorchester.

Dorset Echo:

The scene on the main Dorchester Road at Broadwey, Weymouth in February 1978 - the road was completely impassable - but not for these two walkers!

Dorset Echo:

Snow in Rodwell Avenue, Weymouth in 1978

Dorset Echo:

 Snow in 1978 - Sidney Hall on the left, looking straight along Newstead Road, Weymouth

Dorset Echo:

Youngsters pose in the snow on the Chapelhay Steps in Weymouth in 1978

Dorset Echo:

Snow covers back gardens in Chapelhay, Weymouth

If you were one of the shcoolchildren trapped by the snow or have any bad weather photos of Dorset through the years that you’d like to share, email