The UK is set to be hit with blizzards and freezing temperatures that could drop as low as -7C in Scotland as a new cold blast hits the country after a mild end to 2021
Brits are set to face blizzards with heavy snow and 80mph winds while temperatures could drop as low as -7C in a week of subzero temperatures for the country.
In a sudden shock to the system for many enjoying an unseasonably mild end to 2021, winter has returned with a vengeance with snow and freezing conditions.
After record highs over New Year, temperatures already felt cooler on Monday and Tuesday will be “noticeably colder across the whole of the country”, the Met Office said, with temperatures peaking at 8C or 9C in the South and about 4C or 5C in Scotland.
BBCweather forecaster Ben Rich said up to 15cm of snow could fall on higher ground in Scotland on Tuesday.
He said: “Snow and gales for some of us particularly in the north of the UK. The cold air filtering in on the back of this band of cloud and rain and with some sleet and snow on the back edge.
“Ice a possible hazard across the northern half of the UK where it will be a really chilly first part of the morning. Wintry showers starting to pile up in northern Scotland, in fact snow showers even to quite low levels, over the highest hills 15cm of accumulating snow and the gales, severe gales around northern coasts, there could be blizzard conditions for a time.”
Met Office forecaster Simon Partridge said in Aberdeenshire and northern and eastern Scotland, winds of up to 80mph could create “localised blizzard conditions”, and gave warnings of snow and ice for people travelling.
Aviemore, in Scotland, saw five centimetres of snow on Monday, which would be added to overnight, Mr Partridge said, suggesting that this might be “good news” for the Cairngorms town’s ski resorts.
“But I’m not sure they’ll be overly happy about the strength of the wind,” he added.
Elsewhere, in Lincolnshire or the Pennines, any snow is likely to be “slushy stuff” over the next few days.
Mr Partridge said that those in the South will also feel the chill on Tuesday, as the winds could make the 8C temperature mark feel much harsher.
“It will definitely be colder, so if you’re going out, think about an extra layer tomorrow [Tuesday] … you might need anything to keep the wind out because it’s not going to be pretty,” he added.
Maps from WXCharts show that the temperature in northern Scotland could fall to -7C on Wednesday night and towns in the South could face temperatures of -4C on Thursday morning.
Mr Partridge said: “It’s basically what we should have for this time in January; it’s just that we’ve been so mild for so long that it’s suddenly a bit of a shock to the system.”
Warm winds from the mid-Atlantic meant temperatures hovered around the 16C mark in parts of the UK at the turn of the year, making it the warmest New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day on record.
UK forecast for the next 5 days
Rain slowly clearing to the southeast. Otherwise sunny spells and showers. Central and northern England and southern Scotland mostly fine and dry. Windy, particularly in north with coastal gales, locally severe. Cold.
Cold night with widespread slight frost. Wintry showers continuing over northern Scotland, north Wales and feeding into the Midlands from the Irish Sea for a time. Winds slowly easing.
Plenty of fine, dry and sunny weather. Parts of Wales and northern Scotland still seeing some wintry showers but these slowly dying out. Cold with easing winds for most.
Outlook for Thursday to Saturday:
Changeable and often windy with bands of rain and mainly hill snow followed by blustery showers of rain, sleet and snow; these chiefly in the west. Otherwise dry. Rather cold.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.