THIS weekend's UK Open in Minehead is to be played behind closed doors due to the snow making it unsafe for fans to travel to Butlin's for the event.

The PDC confirmed the tournament would get underway on Friday afternoon from 12pm, and a statement from Butlin's added: "Due to the unprecedented extreme weather conditions, we have regretfully decided to not allow guests to attend this weekend’s PDC Coral UK Open at our resort in Minehead, Somerset, for safety reasons – however, the tournament will take place behind closed doors and be broadcast on ITV4 as scheduled."

Butlins had earlier tweeted that they had "regretfully decided to cancel" the entire event, only to delete it minutes later, and have reassured fans already on site that they will be catered for - though only guests of the players are being allowed to watch, with other guests on site restricted to watching in the on-site bars or in their rooms.

The resort explained that this was because they "did not want to encourage others to risk dangerous onward travel" (see below), but those who had made the effort to get there were left frustrated.

Butlins' statement went on: "Guests already on our resort can be assured that their accommodation will be available to them until it is safe to travel home.

"Any guests who have not started their journey for either of these breaks are urged NOT to do so.

"If you are already en route, please be aware that our Minehead resort cannot accept any more guests, so we would ask you to turn around and head home when it is safe to do so."

The late decision will cause controversy among spectators, who have been having a tough time trying to get to the venue with parts of the A358 between Taunton and Minehead impassable as the county continues to suffer the effects of Storm Emma.

A red weather warning from the Met Office was in place through parts of yesterday and public transport has been widely affected.

Seven players (Rene Berndt, Andrew Davidson, John Goldie, Maik Langendorf, Mick McGowan, William O'Connor and Scott Robertson) have withdrawn from the tournament due to being unable to travel.

Fans on social media have been voicing their displeasure at the confusion surrounding this morning's mixed messages, with many struggling to negotiate the hazardous conditions.

The Premier League Darts in Exeter last night (Thursday) was cancelled for safety reasons.