Brits wake to blanket of snow as weather warnings issued for swathes of UK

Rebecca Speare-Cole
·3 min read
HUDDERSFIELD, UNITED KINGDOM - 2021/01/15: Smoke rises from a chimney in the snow-covered West Yorkshire landscape. Many parts of West Yorkshire are still covered with snow following heavy snowfall the previous day, which caused widespread disruption to travel. (Photo by Adam Vaughan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Smoke rises from a chimney in the snow-covered West Yorkshire landscape. (Getty Images)

Brits have woken up to a blanket of snow with weather warnings in place across swathes of the country.

Forecasters say there has been up to 2cm in Norfolk and East Anglia so far with the potential for more snowfall until midday.

It comes after the Met Office issued yellow weather warnings for snow and ice across Scotland, northeast England, the east midlands and the south-east, lasting until Saturday evening.

Snow and ice could cause travel chaos, with the potential to leave vehicles stranded and rural communities cut off, the warnings say.

Read: Heartwarming moment strangers push hearse up a hill after it got stuck in snow

The east of England has even been hit by an amber alert, which will be in place until 2pm, and warns of up to 10cm of snow in areas of Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk.

The amber warning states: “There is a good chance that some rural communities could become cut off.

"Power cuts are likely and other services, such as mobile phone coverage, may be affected."

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 16: People walk early morning on a partially snow covered Parliament Hill in Hampstead on January 15, 2021 in London, England. The Met Office issued an amber snow alert for the east of England and a yellow snow warning for the South East. (Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images)
People walk early morning on a partially snow covered Parliament Hill in Hampstead on January 15, 2021 in London, England. (Getty Images)

Met Office meteorologist Greg Snell said the wintry showers moved eastwards across the UK overnight with rain turning to snow by Saturday morning.

Areas of north London, Kent, Norfolk, and East Anglia have all woken to a dusting of snow, he added.

Snell said both Andrews Field in Essex and Barnham in Norfolk reported 2cm this morning.

He added that the amber weather warning covers up to 10cm of snow so there could possibly be higher totals in several places as more falls in the next few hours.

Watch: UK weather: Snow and ice to bring travel disruption to much of UK

He said: “As we go through the next hours even in the areas where it is snowing it will transition back to rain as the afternoon goes on.

“By midday the worst of the snow will be out the way,” he added.

Temperatures are expected to rise on Saturday afternoon to around 2C in the east.

South-west England will be the mildest region, which could see highs of 10C or 11C.

As temperatures drop going into Saturday night, Snell warned that there could be icy patches, especially in East Anglia.

HUDDERSFIELD, UNITED KINGDOM - 2021/01/15: A man seen snowboarding on  a hill in Huddersfield. Many parts of West Yorkshire are still covered with snow following heavy snowfall the previous day, which caused widespread disruption to travel. (Photo by Adam Vaughan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
A man seen snowboarding on a hill in Huddersfield. Many parts of West Yorkshire are still covered with snow following heavy snowfall the previous day, which caused widespread disruption to travel. (Getty Images)

Luke Miall, another Met Office meteorologist said that despite the "impactful" weather at the weekend, conditions will become wetter going into Monday and Tuesday before another cold spell later in the week.

The snow follows bad weather on Friday which caused disruption to travel and further rollout of Covid vaccinations, with Leeds University delaying the opening of its asymptomatic Covid-19 test centre.

Over-80s who were due to receive their Covid-19 vaccine at Newcastle's Centre for Life were told they could rebook rather than risk making a trip in the icy conditions.

Northumbria Police said 17 vehicles were involved in a succession of crashes on a stretch of the Coast Road in North Tyneside.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 16: Cars have a light covering of snow early morning in Hampstead on January 15, 2021 in London, England. The Met Office issued an amber snow alert for the east of England and a yellow snow warning for the South East. (Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images)
Cars have a light covering of snow early morning in Hampstead on January 15, 2021 in London, England. (Getty Images)

Emergency services were called to four separate incidents within a matter of hours on Friday morning.

Freezing fog patches and plummeting temperatures also led to a loss of gas supply to approximately 700 homes in the Hebden Bridge area.

The Environment Agency has now issued 32 flood warnings across England.

Read: Man charged after 'giving elderly woman fake COVID vaccine for £160'

Leicestershire and Essex are among the regions suffering the worst of the heavy rains this week.

In Bottesford, Leicestershire, cars made their way through a flooded road and the River Roding in Essex burst its banks.

Watch: COVID-19: Diruption to vaccine rollout as heavy snow batters UK