Heavy snow has played havoc with deliveries of Christmas groceries ordered online.

Supermarket groups have battle to fulfil orders because of the cold weather, forcing them to hire more vans and necessitating drivers’ overtime.

Grocers have brought forward delivery times to allow for a greater margin of error, The Times reported, but that has disrupted householders’ plans.

Sainsbury’s has asked its drivers in snow-hit areas to report for work early.

A Sainsbury’s spokeswoman told The Times: “We’re doing our utmost to make sure Christmas is as promised. Our online team is working solidly to make sure everything is delivered on time.”

A Tesco spokeswoman said shoppers would be compensated for any orders not received and that extra drivers had been drafted in.

Asda said it had a backlog of 500 deliveries from the weekend and extra vans were in use. A spokesman admitted: “Unfortunately, there are going to be some people disappointed.”

The snow has caused problems for retailers more widely. Footfall was lower than expected last weekend because of the bad weather.