UK snow latest: Flights cancelled as heavy snow sparks ‘doomsday’ chaos with temperatures set to plunge to -6C

Sean Morrison, Ella Wills

Heavy snow has swept across Britain sparking flight cancellations, with drivers being warned of dangerously icy roads.

Temperatures struggled to rise much above freezing as a band of wintry weather hit the UK on Tuesday.

The mercury is expected to plunge to -6C overnight, according to the Met Office.

A yellow weather warning for ice came into force at 4pm on Tuesday and remains in place until 11am on Wednesday, covering much of the country.

Six flights in and out of Manchester Airport were cancelled, affecting hundreds of passengers. Further flights were delayed as staff battled to de-ice aircraft.

In Scotland, flights to Glasgow and Edinburgh from Stornoway Airport were delayed. Three schools were closed in the Highlands.

Travellers faced some disruption as roads were closed due to the icy conditions.

Campaign manager Ally Wilsdon, 25, told the Standard her half hour journey home from Stokenchurch via High Wycombe took three hours.

"It was like Doomsday. There were cars abandoned everywhere," she said.

A man walks through a snow shower in London (EPA)

Delighted Londoners shared footage of snowfall in the capital as wintry showers hit the south-east this afternoon.

Light flurries of snow began to fall in parts of west London including in Ruislip.

Met Office meteorologist Martin Bowles told the Standard there had been up to 6cm of snowfall in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire on Tuesday afternoon as the cold snap took hold in the south-east.

Newcastle was blanketed by snow on Tuesday (John Mason)

Further hail, sleet and snow showers are expected across England, Scotland and Wales overnight and into Wednesday.

Wintry weather affected driving conditions during the morning rush hour on Tuesday.

Flurries of snow fell in Reading (Jason Collie)

By mid-morning Police Scotland had received 125 reports of road incidents, with the force urging motorists to slow down and drive to the conditions.

Traffic Scotland urged drivers to take care on roads.

Highways England has warned of severe delays on the M40 northbound due to the wintry weather conditions in the south-east.

Traffic in Buckinghamshire was brought to a standstill amid the wintry weather conditions (Maggie Wills)

Meanwhile drivers in Buckinghamshire were left stranded as heavy snow brought traffic to a standstill in parts, sparking delays of several hours.

Footage showed cars queuing on the A404 between High Wycombe and Amersham.

Flurries in Haughton Green, Greater Manchester (Twitter/Sarah Elise)

Drivers were earlier warned of heavy snowfall on the M62 trans-Pennine route as efforts were underway overnight to keep the road open using ploughs and salt.

Mr Bowles said the cold weather was set to continue on Tuesday night across the country with a widespread frost everywhere.

But the forecaster played down reports that Britain was facing the coldest night of winter so far, breaking the current record of -10.8C in Braemar, Aberdeenshire on January 18.

Snowy scenes in South Lanarkshire (Twitter/Jackie McLean)

He said: "The lowest temperature is likely to be around -6C, potentially lower on the mountains.

"More widely it will be below freezing and parts of the north-west could drop down to -5C."

Mr Bowles added that the snow is set to continue for the next couple of hours in the south-east and then clear away.

But there will be some showers in Wales and Scotland overnight, he said.

Snow was not confined to the hills in Scotland on Tuesday, with flurries in Edinburgh and Glasgow.

There was also snowfall on the Pennines in the north of England.

The A83 was blocked in Argyll and Bute, while the B974 in Aberdeenshire closed after vehicles got stuck in snow.

Flights to Glasgow and Edinburgh from Stornoway Airport were delayed and three schools were shut in the Highlands due to the weather.

It comes after the Met Office warned that thundersnow could strike the UK this week as temperatures plummet below zero.

Thundersnow is an unusual phenomenon that normally only occurs during a few months of the year.