UK weather: Snow and -10C for freezing Britain today with Beast from the East next week

A snow plough spreads grit as it passes through Killin in Stirlingshire (Image: PA)

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Snow showers and freezing fog is forecast to sweep the UK in the coming days ahead of a second "Beast from the East" hitting next week.

The Met Office has issued yellow weather warnings for snow and ice covering almost all of the nation throughout Thursday and Friday.

Bitter temperatures as low as -10C are to arrive in scenes reminiscent of the concerted cold weather that blighted the country in February and March 2018.

Warnings for snow and ice likely to cause slippery surfaces and travel disruption until midnight on Wednesday are in place for Scotland, and for Northern Ireland the same warning is in place until 9am on Thursday morning.

From Thursday afternoon until Friday morning, a yellow warning for ice covers the north and the entire east and west coasts of England and Wales, with only a small portion of central southern areas free from warnings.

Met Office weather warnings are in place for much of the country

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The Environment Agency has also issued four flood warnings for areas where flooding is likely, on the Isle of Sheppey, Kings Lynn, Peterborough, and by the River Derwent in North Yorkshire.

Some 30 alerts, for areas where flooding is possible, are also scattered across England.

There were no high water warnings in place for Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland on Wednesday night.

Snowfall is expected in the northern half of Scotland on Thursday, with 1-2cm depth covering lowland areas, and up to 10cm expected to fall in areas higher than 300m above sea level.

Temperature are set to be bitterly cold on Thursday

Met Office meteorologist Clare Nasir said this wintry weather will be brought on by a "bank of rain which readily turns to snow" moving from Scotland and Northern Ireland in the early hours of Thursday, to England and Wales as the day progresses.

Freezing temperatures ranging from 0C in London to -10C in the valleys in Wales are predicted overnight, picking up to between 2-5C for most places in the UK in the daytime.

Ms Nasir said: "Watch out for some freezing fog patches (and) the risk of ice first thing.

"However, through the morning, we will see some brighter skies for southern parts of England and Wales."

Heavy snow in Allendale, Northumberland
(Image: Newcastle Chronicle)

Ambulance services have urged people to plan their journeys ahead of setting off and to wrap up warm to ease pressures on emergency services.

The risk of icy weather and wintry showers is set to persist through Friday, with cloudier and milder weather moving in from the north and patches of sun across the country.

A yellow weather warning for snow is in place for north-east Scotland from midnight on Thursday until midday on Friday, and an ice warning covers Wales and much of England with the exception of some central and southern areas until 11am on Friday.

Today:

Early rain, sleet and snow over Scotland and Northern Ireland moving into northern England and North Wales, brighter weather and wintry showers following. Elsewhere, mostly dry but early freezing fog patches slow to clear. Feeling cold.

Tonight:

Outbreaks of rain, sleet and snow and icy patches affecting parts of England and Wales. Southeastern England mainly dry whilst snow showers catch parts of Northern Ireland and northern Scotland.

Friday:

Outbreaks of rain, sleet and snow continuing over parts of England and Wales. Southeastern England mainly dry whilst snow showers catch parts of Northern Ireland and northern Scotland. Feeling cold.

Outlook for Saturday to Monday:

Frosty start Saturday. Occasional rain and strong winds at time across parts of Scotland from later Saturday, bringing some hill snow. Elsewhere, staying rather cold with patchy fog at times.

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