Met Office warns of gales exceeding 70mph and heavy snow in parts of the country, causing travel chaos. An Arctic blast with lows of 5C is expected to continue through the weekend
Brits are being hit by heavy snowfall and gales of 70 mph as Arctic air continues to grip the country. Temperatures have dropped to -5C.
After the balmy 20C temperatures that welcomed spring, it has been bitterly cold in April. The temperature is below the average for this time of the year. It is expected that the freezing weather will continue into the weekend.
A minimum temperature of -5C would be much colder than the average April minimum temperature, 3.75C (between 1991 and 2020).
However, it is still below the record coldest temperature for Saturday, April 9 and 10, which was -10.5C at Belper, Derbyshire in 1973 and -10.1C at Grantown-on-Spey Morayshire in 1978.
The Met Office has issued yellow weather warnings for snow in the North of Scotland, and strong winds Thursday morning for the North West of England and North Wales.
The Met Office has issued a warning about snow until 9am. “Wintry conditions overnight and early Thursday may lead to some travel disruption in a few areas.”
It has spoken to people: “Some roads and possibly railways may be affected by snow leading to longer journey times.
“Possibly icy surfaces leading to increased likelihood of injuries or accidents, probably mainly on higher roads.”
WX Charts Maps show that more than 20cm of snow could fall today, and flurries are forecast for Friday.
In Scotland, temperatures could fall to -3C today. Northern England may see mercury near zero.
It will feel bitterly cold with strong winds over the next days, with maps showing that it could drop to -5C Saturday.
Met Office gale warnings are in effect until 5am, but Thursday is forecast to be windy with gales of 70mph.
Met office forecaster Alex Deakin said: “Cold winds are strengthening. Thursday will be bitterly cold in the United States.
“A big swirl of cloud earlier on Wednesday, that is an area of low pressure, the low itself is moving steadily out to the North Sea and as it does the isobars squeezing closer together. (With) the wind strengthening and also coming down from the north introducing colder air right across the land, as I say quite a bitter feel with that wind on Thursday.”
UK forecast for the next 5 days
Cold, windy and showery for many.
Bands of rain or showers will move southwards across many parts with some snow on northern hills. Some drier, sunnier interludes, especially in the south this morning. Windy for many with gales affecting some coasts, and feeling cold.
Showers mostly dying out inland but continuing across northern Scotland with some snow on hills. Clear spells developing, allowing a frost in many places. Rain reaching the far southwest later.
Rain affecting southern England for a time, clearing by afternoon. Elsewhere, a mixture of sunny spells and showers, some heavy with hail, sleet, and snow on hills. Cold and windy.
Outlook for Saturday to Monday:
Plenty of sunshine but still cold with a few showers on Saturday. Feeling milder from Sunday but with cloud and rain moving in from the west overnight and through Monday.