Spring definitely has not sprung, with the UK set for widespread snowstorms, risk of flooding and freezing temperatures this weekend.
Charlie Powell, spokesman at the Met Office, told Aol Travel: "The worst affected areas for snow will be north Wales, the Midlands, north-west England, Northern Ireland and southern Scotland (Amber warnings here). Over the highest ground, as much as 20 to 30 cm of snow is possible but at lower levels, between 5 to10 cm. There will also be strong winds and low temperatures so blizzards and ice respectively are likely to be an additional problem.
"There is a risk of flooding with localised surface water and rivers in south-west England – an Amber warning here for rain with 40 to 60 mm by the end of Friday across southern parts of Devon and Cornwall.
"The heavy rain and snow should ease by Saturday evening but it will stay cold through much of next week, although much drier."
An area of low pressure is expected to move in from the Atlantic during Thursday and Friday, causing the unsettled weather.
As the rain moves north-eastwards it will mix with cold air and has the potential to give as much as 20 to 30 cm of snow across parts of north Wales, northern England, south-west Scotland and Northern Ireland during Friday and Saturday.
"As always, we are working with different agencies to help keep Britain on the move, and to keep people safe and well. However, people should be prepared for further disruption as we head through the next few days."
A spokesman for the Scottish Government added: "Though we were enjoying record high temperatures around this time last year, we know that March normally brings us challenging weather conditions and this year is proving much more like the norm. Already this week our agencies and partners have dealt with Amber snow warnings across much of the country, and we continue to do all we can to ensure Scotland is prepared for any potential weather disruption.
"When the snow and storms hit, drivers can play their part by planning journeys in advance and using other forms of transport where available. Travellers should monitor Met Office forecasts and use the many other sources of information and advice to plan ahead, prepare well and stay safe."
Pete Fox, Environment Agency spokesperson, said: "Heavy rain in south west England and south Wales on Thursday and into Friday means there is a risk of localised surface water and river flooding in the south west, the southern counties and parts of south Wales. The public can sign up for flood warnings and check the latest information on the Environment Agency's website, or follow us on Twitter at @EnvAgency."
The Met Office added that the unsettled weather looks set to continue into next week, with the north and east of the UK remaining very much on the cold side. Although temperatures in south-western parts of the country should be nearer to normal for a while, this may turn out to be short-lived.
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