UK faces '3cm snow' within days and seven English counties will be hammered

THREE centimetres of snow per hour could hit England - as south as London - across a 12-hour wintry blast before the end of April. A surprise and final snow blast of winter could smash into the country, with WX Charts maps and charts, which use Met Desk data, showing a wintry turn and flurries of the white stuff falling.

Weather forecasters expect a cold front to move in from Sunday (April 14). Maps show snow - up to 3cm - coming down in the Scottish Highlands around April 22 before moving southward into England, with London in the firing line.

Capital city London, Gloucestershire and parts of Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, and the West Midlands could be hit, with Coventry facing 2.5cm per hour as it takes the worst of the blast.

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Oxfordshire and Northamptonshire face 2cm per hour, with the capital also facing a dusting, maps show. Looking ahead from April 26 into May, the Met Office predicts: "Towards the end of April, high pressure will probably be close to the UK with a good deal of dry weather for many areas.

"Moving into May, these settled conditions will probably move northwards, with the driest weather across the northwest of the UK. Where more unsettled conditions develop, these are most likely in the south with a risk of some heavy rain or showers. Temperatures will probably rise above average overall, with warm days but some colder nights."

The BBC Weather team says: "The final week of the month is very uncertain but there are some indications that the high-pressure in the north and north-east of the UK will hold, potentially leading to drier weather particularly in the north. The other scenario sees the high pressure retreating again further west of the UK and re-establishing an overall more north-westerly flow with changeable and cooler conditions."

It also warns April 15 to April 28 will be "colder at times".