BBC Weather: Rain and snow to move in across the UK
The Met Office confirmed to Express.co.uk that the coldest day of 2021 so far was on January 6, when -12.3C hit Loch Glascarnoch in Scotland. But freezing northerly winds from the Arctic region are predicted to bring even colder temperatures to central Scotland on Friday, February 8, with a low of -13C. The same region is also expected to be hit with 18 inches of snow on the same day, the latest snow depth models from WXCHARTS show.
Northwestern parts of England could be battered by heavy snow on February 8, as the maps show 11 inches in the Lake District.
The Arctic freeze appears to then make its way down as far south as Luton, where six inches is expected to fall on the same day.
The fierce ice blast is likely to linger until at least Sunday, February 14, with Scotland being hit with 21 inches.
Dr Claire Kennedy-Edwards, senior meteorologist at The Weather Company, warned the cold air could be pushed over to the UK this weekend.
She told Express.co.uk: “High pressure is currently ridging over Iceland and will continue to do so through the coming weekend, as areas of low pressure move in from the Atlantic to bring periods of wet and windy conditions for many areas of the UK and Ireland.
“Northern parts of the British Isles may see at least see some of this turn to snow, maybe as far south as the English Midlands, although the main threat for most areas will be further local flooding (due to saturated ground and more rain).
“Most areas will be turning cooler through Friday 29, with Sunday 31 probably being the coldest point.”
Dr Kennedy-Edwards added colder conditions may persist as February progresses.
She said: “Early next week, the high over Iceland is expected to extend to the Nordic region.
“For the British Isles, little change is expected in the overall forecast, cool to the north with some snow risks, mild to the south with more rain and local flooding.
“Tuesday 2 and Wednesday 3 are currently looking the mildest days of next week.
“Later next week, the high pressure intensifies and expands over the Nordic region – the Scandinavian block.
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“This will result in a colder easterly flow across the British Isles, with temperatures falling widely and some significant wind-chill for England and Wales in particular.
“Snow may become common for eastern coastal counties of Britain, although it is too far out to say how far westwards the snow may extend.
“Beyond that, into mid-February, for the UK/Northern Europe, models do try to bring less cold conditions back in from the west or north-west but some scenarios see the colder conditions persisting. Confidence is low for mid-February.”
The BBC’s long-range forecast warned of winter storms at the start of February.
The forecast said: “High pressure is expected to build over Greenland and northern Europe in early February, strengthening as we head deeper into the month.
“This will tend to push the low-pressure track further south into the Mediterranean Sea.
“It will be a slow process though and is not likely to happen until a bit later in the month.
“However, there will be plenty of cold air nearby to the north and northeast that will become increasingly widespread.
“The cold snaps in early February may tend to last a few more days compared to late January.
“As the low-pressure systems move in from the sub-tropical Atlantic, they will be able to tap into some warmer air to give them a bit more energy.
“There is a chance that we can see a few stronger winter storms push through bringing some significant winds or rain.”
The Met Office added the wintry conditions should start this weekend after issuing a yellow weather warning for snow on Saturday that will last from 3am until 6pm along western parts of England.
These areas include Manchester, Stoke-on-Trent, Oxford, and the West Midlands, with up to 15cm expected to fall on higher ground.
Caerphilly, Monmouthshire and Wrexham in Wales could also be hit will snow on higher levels.
The Met Office said: “An area of rain pushing in from the southwest through the early morning will readily turn to snow in places as it encounters colder air.
“There remains a good deal of uncertainty in how far north the rain and snow will get, before the band stalls and starts to move south again as it eases.
“3-7 cm of snow is possible to low levels with the potential for 10-15 cm over high ground (above 200-300 m), mainly in Wales and the West Midlands.
“There is a very low chance of perhaps as much 20 cm over highest parts of the Shropshire and Snowdonia.”
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