Snow warning: 'Large swathes of the UK' will be affected, says Met Office

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Heavy snow, torrential rain and icy conditions are forecast to hit parts of the UK over the next few days.

Heavy snow is expected to blanket large parts of Wales, while small flurries could hit London and parts of southeast England, the Met Office said.

A yellow warning for ice covers much of northeast England and large parts of Scotland until 11am, and torrential rain is forecast across Cornwall and much of Devon until 8pm, bringing the risk of flooding and transport disruption.

The Environment Agency had 69 flood warnings in place across England on Friday evening meaning immediate action is required, and 231 alerts, meaning flooding is possible.

Met Office spokeswoman Nicola Maxey said the downpours will be caused by a weather front moving in from the South West.

"From Friday evening we've got a series of weather fronts bringing rain across Cornwall and much of Devon until tomorrow (Saturday)," she said.

"As this rain starts to move north it will combine with cold air already over the UK, causing snow across much of Wales, where up to 20cm could fall in the highest regions.

"Over the weekend large swathes of the UK will see some form of snow, with warnings in place for much of Scotland and the northeast of England.

"Even parts of London and the South East should see a small flurry, which is unlikely to settle."

It comes after parts of Scotland were covered by up to 19cm of snow in just 24 hours overnight on Thursday, while areas in southwest England recorded almost 30mm of rainfall.

Much of England and Wales will also see snowfall and widespread ice between Monday and Wednesday, with warnings over road closures, power cuts and risk of injury due to ice.

Ms Maxey said the weekend will also be very cold, with the highest temperatures reaching 6C (43F), along with frost on both mornings.

She added: "As we move into next week another front will move in from the South West with long periods of snow and icy conditions for most of England, Wales and Scotland.

"Up to 5cm is expected off the coasts, which will reach highs of 15cm in the higher areas in Scotland and Wales."

She warned drivers to prepare cautiously for "dangerous" icy conditions.

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