Europe's death toll has climbed to 120 as vicious winter weather sweeps across the continent pushing temperatures in some area to -33C.

Parts of the Black Sea were reported to have frozen over, homes and whole villages were cut off, travel disrupted and businesses closed as Siberian weather continues its grip on a vast area from the UK to the Black Sea.

In the UK the Met Office has issued its first countrywide serious cold weather alert of the winter amid fears for the elderly and ill as temperatures continue to linger well below zero in many areas. Heavy snow has been predicted to batter parts of the country, according to Sky News.

In Serbia, more than 11,500 villagers were trapped by heavy snowfalls and the authorities declared a state of emergency.

The worst affected area was reported to be near Serbia's southwestern town of Sijenica where residents have been facing heavy snow for 26 days. In some places, snowbanks are five metres (15ft) high.

Emergency and relief efforts have been focused on providing food, petrol and medical services and evacuating the sick.

Hospitals in Ukraine reported a surge in the number of people admitted with frostbite and hypothermia, with around 1,200 people taken in. The Ukranian death toll alone from the freeze is 101.

In Romania, schools have been shut because of the freezing cold. The Daily Mail reported that in Bulgaria, where 16 towns recorded their lowest temperatures since records started 100 years ago, 1,070 schools remained closed and large sections of the Danube were frozen.

IBTimes UK looks at the Big Freeze across Europe: