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12:38pm UK, Tuesday April 03, 2012
Snow is predicted to fall in northern England and Ireland and possibly in the Midlands and Wales today after around eight inches (19cm) came down across parts of Scotland.
Temperatures are set to plummet to as low as -5C tonight north of the border, as the big chill moves south, following one of the warmest ever March’s.
And last Tuesday it was 23.6C in Aboyne, Aberdeenshire, marking a new high in Scotland for the month.
But the situation is markedly different now as about 10cm of snow blanketed most areas of northern Scotland overnight, with accumulations of 19cm in Aviemore in the Highlands and temperatures of close to -2C in Glen Ogle.
Scotland’s central parts were also hit by the wintry weather, which will gradually creep into northern England, parts of Wales and the Midlands today.
The Met Office has issued an amber severe weather warning for snow in four areas of central and northern Scotland, advising the public to be prepared for transport disruption with ice developing on untreated roads.
However, forecasters said the cold snap, which has been caused by an Arctic weather front bearing down on the UK, will be short lived with temperatures recovering on Thursday.
Snow in Oldmeldrum, Scotland (Pic: Dianne Smith)
London and the southeast should escape the snow with temperatures of around 14C today before dropping to around 8C on Wednesday.
Sky’s weather presenter Isobel Lang said the snow in Scotland was “most likely to settle over the higher ground, with more slushy accumulations at lower levels”.
She added: “However, some higher routes could be affected by settling snow for a time bringing dangerous driving conditions.
“Sunshine will become more widespread across Scotland this afternoon, as the wintry weather clears from the Borders, but there will still be a few snow showers around coasts. It will turn icy tonight but stay largely clear.
“For Ireland, northern England, the Midlands and Wales expect rain at first, but conditions will turn increasingly wintry as that cold air sinks south and the northeast wind sets in.”
The UK enjoyed one of the warmest March’s on record
Lang went on: “Snow will fall over higher ground in northern England and Ireland by the end of the morning, affecting higher Pennine routes.
“This risk is then set to spread into the Midlands and Wales by the end of the day and it will have turned much colder by this stage.
“Snow is most likely over higher parts here, perhaps extending into the West Country or Southwest at times. For southeast England it will remain less cold through the day and night although there will be showery rain at times – temperatures in London should hit 14C today and 6C tonight.
“On Wednesday the cold air will linger across southern Britain with the northeast wind and outbreaks of rain, sleet and hill snow.
“The snow is most likely over the Peaks, into the hillier parts of South Wales and the southwest moors.
“The remainder of the week will see less cold air spreading in from the Atlantic on a west to north-westerly wind – so temperatures will rise again but expect a fair amount of cloud into the Easter weekend with rain at times.”
Pictures of Spring sunshine: