UK braced for ‘messy mix’ of wintry weather

Parts of England and Wales are braced for more wintry conditions, as a “messy mix” of weather warnings for snow, ice and rain remain in force.

The cold conditions will move further north into next week, with the potential for 20cm of snow in places before midweek, a Met Office forecaster has said.

Meteorologist Simon Partridge told PA: “We’ve got this band of rain sleet and snow that’s moving across much of England and Wales through today, that is a real messy mix.”

The picture varies across the country on Saturday, with much of Devon and Cornwall under a yellow warning for rain, with predictions that as much as 25mm could fall by the end of the day.

Other southern areas will also be wet, but further north sleet, rain and hill snow have triggered a further yellow weather warning.

Winter weather Jan 30th 2021
Winter weather Jan 30th 2021

“They’re just getting a cold, wet, miserable day really under that band there,” Mr Partridge said.

Pictures from Gloucestershire on Saturday morning showed a children’s playground partially submerged in Tewkesbury and vehicles driving through rising floodwaters in Lower Applerlay.

There were similar scenes in Henley on Thames in Oxfordshire, where water was seen rising on to the towpath, surrounding benches and approaching riverside homes.

Winter weather Jan 30th 2021
Winter weather Jan 30th 2021

As the rain and sleet moves away overnight, the risk of ice persists, with central England and Wales faced with a further yellow weather warning on Sunday.

Temperatures will drop as low as minus 6C overnight in England, and the potential for the mercury to fall to between minus 10C and minus 15C in parts of Scotland.

After more settled but chilly days on Monday and Tuesday, Mr Partridge said: “It gets a bit more interesting as we go into Tuesday and the middle of the week.”

He predicted a “much heavier” band of rain to arrive overnight on Monday into Tuesday which will “quickly turn to snow as it bumps up against cold air” and has triggered further yellow weather warnings for snow and ice.

The #rain may have eased across southwest England just now, but there's more on its way today and a yellow weather warning remains in force here until 2000 #weatheraware

— Met Office (@metoffice) January 30, 2021

Northern England and parts of Wales could see snow “pretty much anywhere” with 1cm to 5cm likely at lower levels and 5cm to 10cm possible in the hills.

The highest areas could get “up to 20cm or so though the course of the day” and Mr Partridge predicted that Trans-Pennine routes in particular could have some issues on Tuesday.

The same band of wintry weather will move northwards towards Wednesday and take the weather warnings for snow with it, with the central belt of Scotland most likely to see disruption.

“Not too bad, just messy in the south today, pretty good on Sunday and Monday, and then disruptive snow affecting northern parts of the UK” later in the week, Mr Partridge said.