UK weather: Snow and ice across much of country before rain returns

Telegraph reporters
·3-min read
Kieron Taylor pulls his sled up the snow covered Gold Hill at Shaftesbury in Dorset at dawn - Graham Hunt/BNPS
Kieron Taylor pulls his sled up the snow covered Gold Hill at Shaftesbury in Dorset at dawn - Graham Hunt/BNPS

Plummeting temperatures have brought snow and ice across swathes of the UK with cold conditions following Storm Christoph, and is forecast to remain until the middle of the week.

London was blanketed in snow on Sunday morning. Areas of sleet and snow had been forecast for southeast Northern Ireland, Wales and southwest England moving east into the Midlands and the south and southeast of England. Sunny spells are expected elsewhere but also wintry showers, frost, and windy conditions in the far southwest.

Watch: UK weather - 'Thundersnow' reported as heavy snow falls across large parts of country

In the evening, showers will become largely confined to eastern areas and overnight will clear. Most places will be dry with clear spells however showers will sink southwards across Scotland and there will be more showers in the south-west by dawn.

Steve Willington, chief forecaster for the Met Office, said: “The exit of Storm Christoph – which brought the heavy rain to a central band of the UK – has established a flow of colder air from Iceland and the Arctic. And this is bringing a mix of wintry hazards across the UK."

Frosts are expected overnight on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

Snow in Hampstead Heath in London on Sunday - Hollie Adams /Getty Images Europe 
Snow in Hampstead Heath in London on Sunday - Hollie Adams /Getty Images Europe
Snow in Battersea Park
Snow in Battersea Park
2401 Weather
2401 Weather

Martin Bowles, meteorologist at the Met Office, said: "The biggest hazard over the next couple of days is going to be ice because we're getting these snow showers which will all freeze overnight.

"Obviously roads tend to be quite well gritted, especially main roads, but I would warn people to be careful on pavements, minor roads that don't get gritted or city roads."

The cold conditions are forecast to remain across the UK until Tuesday before Atlantic-dominated weather is due to exert an influence, gradually bringing milder, but wetter conditions to the UK once more.

The warning of more wet weather comes as residents of a town in Worcestershire have pleaded with the Prime Minister to upgrade flood defences after being washed out for the third year in a row.

The town of Bewdley, situated on the bank of the River Severn, has suffered from flooding for three consecutive years after temporary flood barriers failed.

During a visit in March 2020, Boris Johnson was heckled by residents and branded a "traitor" for failing to meet badly-affected communities during the height of the flooding.

Mr Johnson claimed he would "get Bewdley done", but more permanent defences are yet to be put in place.

Entire streets and gardens were left underwater in the wake of Storm Christoph last week, and many homes were left damaged.

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Water levels in the River Severn peaked on Saturday at 5.4 metres, around the same as last year, according to Dave Throup of the Environment Agency.

Resident Dan Madden told Sky News that his stress levels were "through the roof" after his home was flooded for the second time, and would be homeless for months while it was repaired.

"It took me years and years to buy a house in the town I love and it's flooded twice in two years," he said.

"I just hope Boris gets us the permanent barrier done."

Temporary flood defences were erected in the town in both 2019 and 2020 as the National Audit Office warned that the share of funding for flood defences going to deprived areas had "reduced substantially" in recent years.

Last year, Bewdley was among the worst-hit areas in England.