UK weather: Snow in the forecast as conditions turn 'cold and unsettled'

Snow could blanket parts of the UK later this week as conditions turn "colder and more unsettled".

The Met Office said heavy rain is also possible as wet weather spreads in the next 24 hours.

In its outlook, it said: "Turning colder and more unsettled on Friday and Saturday, with heavy rain in some places.

"A risk of sleet and hill snow, possibly reaching lower levels."

Find out the forecast for where you live

After spells of rain, Thursday will see drier conditions - but showers could "turn wintry in the North and on high ground", according to the Met Office.

Sky News weather producer Christopher England said the colder conditions follows a mild spell for the time of the year.

He said: "Southwesterly winds moving in with our current low pressure system have brought a brief milder spell, but we'll enter a more northerly flow as the rain clears, bringing temperatures nearer to or a little below the seasonal average to end the week.

"Blustery showers will bring sleet and snow to the hills, and possibly to quite low levels at times.

"Expect some overnight frosts when the winds fall light as well.

"It looks like turning a bit milder again on Monday."

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As we head through the opening part of March, forecasters said it is "likely to be unsettled and showery" with persistent rain and strong winds possible in the South.

The UK has seen nearly a third more rain than normally expected for February.

The Met Office is yet to finalise the average rainfall figures for this month, but it would need to surpass 213.7mm (8.41in) to be wetter than 2020.

Ellie Glaisyer, a Met Office meteorologist, said: "Some locations may approach or exceed record-breaking levels but for the UK as a whole it is unlikely to see the rainfall we saw in 2020.

"In the UK we have seen 131% of the February rainfall we would usually expect."

She said there had been 78% more rain than expected in England, 53% more in Wales but slightly less (6%) than average in Scotland and nearly a fifth less (18% lower than average) in Northern Ireland.

Ms Glaisyer said February's heaviest rainfall had occurred across central and southern England.