SNOW will batter the UK over the coming days as an Arctic Blast sends temperatures plunging as low as -7C.

Up to 20 inches of snow are predicted to fall in Scotland starting from Sunday, with the icy weather moving further down the country over the following days.

By Tuesday London and the rest of southern England will see snow meaning the entire UK should have experienced some snow by the middle of next week.

The Met Office has said shots of Arctic air will hit our shores this week – "meaning much colder and wetter weather".

The weather agency tweeted: "Are you noticing the change in temperature? Several shots of Arctic air are on the way to the UK later this week as the jet stream dips southwards bringing much #colder and wetter weather.

Read our weather live blog for the latest forecasts and updates…

  • Louis Allwood

    High winds from storm Arwen

    The Met Office has named Storm Arwen; the low-pressure system will bring high winds most of the UK.

    An amber wind warning for northeast Scotland and England has been added to existing wider yellow warnings that are in place for Friday for Scotland, Northern Ireland and the west of England and Wales, as well as for much of the UK – except the southeast – on Saturday.  

    The amber warning will run from 3pm on Friday to 9qm on Saturday, with the strongest winds expected in coastal locations, where gusts in excess of 75mph are possible in some places.  

  • Louis Allwood

    Rules to follow during the winter

    Defrosting your car – the lazy way

    Nipping out to switch your engine on early may seem like a clever way to make your car comfy and defrost the windscreen. But you can invalidate your insurance if you leave the motor running unattended.

    Driving with snow still on the roof

    While having snow on your roof is not prohibited it could land you in deep drift with the law. Should clumps fall onto your windscreen or onto another car you could be penalised for driving without “due consideration”.

    Not cleaning every window or your lights

    Every glass panel used to see from and even your head and tail lights need to be scrubbed of ice and condensation to ensure you are within the law.

    Not de-icing your license plate

     Even your licence plate needs to be free of ice and snow. Drivers could be accused of purposely trying to avoid the detection of speed cameras by keeping them covered over.

  • Louis Allwood

    Urgent flu warning as cases set to explode ahead of ‘super cold snap’

    CASES of the flu are expected to explode in the face of a 'super cold snap' of weather currently blanketing Britain, experts have warned.

    The Met Office has said shots of Arctic air will hit our shores this week – "meaning much colder and wetter weather".

    One expert today urged people to come forward for their flu jabs and said that uptake in some groups had been low.

    Dr Conall Watson, consultant epidemiologist at the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said while some have had their jab already, the UK needed to go 'one step further this winter'.

    He explained: "Temperatures are dropping, and winter is approaching. Flu typically increases at this time of the year, so if you are eligible for an NHS flu vaccine and haven’t had it yet, please book as soon as you can.

    "We have now met the World Health Organisation target for flu vaccine uptake in those aged 65 and over, but we need to go further to make sure more people are protected this winter."

  • Louis Allwood

    Amber alert for odd weather event

    The Amber alert is in place tomorrow on the East Coast from Scarborough up to the Shetlands.

    • Flying debris is likely and could lead to Injuries or danger to life
    • Probably damage to trees, temporary structures and buildings, such as tiles blown from roofs
    • Longer journey times and cancellations likely, as road, rail, air and ferry services may be affected
    • There is a good chance that power cuts may occur, with the potential to affect other services, such as mobile phone coverage
    • Injuries and danger to life is likely from large waves and beach material being thrown onto coastal roads, sea fronts and properties, say the Met Office

    Covid booster rolled out for winter

    Covid boosters are being rolled out in order to protect the vulnerable from a “challenging winter”.

    Now we are all mingling freely again, germs are being spread at a quicker rate and the classic winter bugs have made a return.

    Although the vaccine is currently effective against the Delta variant, viruses have to mutate to survive.

    Essentially because a virus has such as a short life span they evolve much faster than bigger, more complex organisms – for instance it took millions of years for humans to evolve the right genes to drink milk (and many still haven’t – particularly in Asia) – and can change their physiology in a matter of months.

    With the number of unvaccinated people still in the UK and the fact that over time the acquired immunity from the virus breaks down, the virus has the space to change and get stronger so it can get around the vaccine – bringing us back to square one.

    What will tonight be like?

    The Met Office have confirmed that tonight will be a chilly one for many as me move into the final days of this month.

    They said it will be "Clear and frosty in south, but clouding over later.

    "Rain, heavy in places, moving south across northern and central parts, briefly falling as snow over hills in north. Becoming windy."

    HURRICANE FORCE WINDS

    The Mountain Weather Information Service has warned of hurricane force winds of 100 to 120mph on Friday in the Cairngorms and south eastern Highlands.

    "Massive snowfall" for the region overnight Friday and into Saturday as well as the risk of wind-blown snow causing whiteout conditions, the service predicts.

    The Scottish Environment Protection Agency said coastal areas were expected to see the worst of the windy weather.

    It said: "High winds from Storm Arwen could bring a risk from spray and debris in coastal areas until Saturday.

    "At this time we are not expecting widespread coastal flooding but please remain vigilant if you're near the coast."

    Snow has also been forecast for some of Scotland's hills and mountains.

    Mountaineering Scotland, an organisation representing hillwalkers, skiers and climbers, said it looked like "a good weekend for festive shopping or get cosy indoors".

    Lots of England remains sunny and bright but chilly this afternoon.

    An employee of the Lake District National Park snapped this stunning image of the rolling hills with clear views stretching for miles.

    The high pressure remains until tomorrow when Storm Arwen is set to wreak havoc.

    Tomorrow, the Lake District is forecast a cloudy morning with outbreaks of occasionally heavy rain and, above about 600m, snow, the snow becoming confined to the highest fells through the early hours.

    The rain, and summit snow, clears towards late morning to leave a bright afternoon with sunny spells and a few wintry showers. The showers are expected to become more frequent through the evening.

    Why do storms have names?

    The Met Office decided to start giving storms names back in 2014, in the same way they do in America.

    The first windstorm to be named was Abigail on 10 November 2015 and since they've been asking the public to suggest names.

    Past storms included Storm Francis, Storm Dennis, and Storm Ophelia – and if you're wondering whether it's just that the public have an eclectic taste for names, the Met Office purposely pick names less common, so as to reduce any bad association with the storm.

    They hoped that naming big storms will make people more aware of them and how dangerous they can be.

    The UK storms will take it in turns to be girls' or boys' names but strangely, research shows that hurricanes with female names are more likely to hurt more people than those with males names.

    Scientists think that's because people find female names less threatening.

    • Adriana Elgueta

      How do you prepare for gale force winds?

      Should an emergency weather warning be broadcast by the Met Office, then the following actions should be taken in order to limit the amount of damage that could be inflicted on your home and belongings:

      • Place cars in garages or where they will be protected from flying debris, such as tiles or branches for example
      • Secure items outside your home that could be blown away, such as patio furniture, bins etc
      • Remove items from around your home that may be blown into windows/patio doors
      • Keep pets indoors
      • Shelter outdoor pets, or bring under cover in a protected location
      • Check that nearby trees and/or tall structures are undamaged and in good repair and are not in danger of being blown over and damaging your home or placing people in danger

      Netweather shows a 30 per cent chance of snow on Friday followed by an 80 per cent chance on Saturday.

      Snowflakes will make their way towards London from the Welsh coast, according to WX Charts.

      However, Grahame Madge told the Sun Online that it is very unlikely that the snow will fall in the city.

      “Wintry showers, including snow, will be a feature of the UK forecast until the weekend,” he said.

      “However, wintry conditions will remain largely confined to northern hills above 300m.

      “Away from the Scottish Highlands, the Lake District, and the north Pennines, there is very little scope for wintry conditions, especially not for lower levels in southern England.”

      The Yellow weather warning is extended to the West Coast

      The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for most of Wales from 9am Friday midnight on Friday, and all of Wales on Saturday until 6pm.

      The wind up to 65mph could cause damage to trees and buildings, with risk of "injuries and danger to life from flying debris" as well as power outrages and travels delay.

      Forecasters warned people living in or visiting coastal areas of "large waves and beach material being thrown onto sea fronts, coastal roads and properties".

      Snowfall is also expected in the Brecon Beacons and Snowdonia.

      NEW STORMED NAMED

      People are poking fun on social media as the fast approaching storm is named 'Arwen'.

      Arwen is a female Welsh name meaning "noble maiden" but it's also a character out of Lord of the Rings who is notorious for being hugely strong and powerful.

      "Storm Arwen? That does not bode well…" one joked.

      Another Twitter used quipped: "Guess that means it's time to break out #LOTR extended trilogy this weekend."

      Another said: "My middle name is Arwen (yes hippy parents), so I am slightly delighted at this name. #StormArwen I may feel differently when it is rattling my roof tiles however."

      The first pictures emerge of the year's first snow as a landscape photographer captures the peaks of Slioch mountain, at 981m high, receive their first dusting.

      The beautiful image captured by a landscape photographer is taken overlooking Lock Maree in Scotland's North West.

      The freezing temperatures come as a band of high pressure has taken hold this week – but as low pressure moves in, it'll bring snow and gale force winds with it.

      FIRST DUSTING ARRIVES

      Snow has started falling in the Scottish Highlands, an independent forecaster has reported.

      The Cairngorms mountain range, the highest point at 1,300m has been predicted a shocking 20 inches this weekend – but the white stuff appears to have made itself at home already in the northern Highlands.

      Storm Arwen is well on its way as the UK is plunged into sub-zero temperatures with 4C in London and -3C in the Scottish Highlands as the first snowflakes settle.

      • Adriana Elgueta

        Amber weather warnings

        An amber weather warning in place for the east coast of northern England and Scotland from Scarborough up to the Shetland Islands.

        The Met Office has warned of flying debris that could likely lead to injuries or danger to life, probably damage to trees, temporary structures and buildings, such as tiles blown from roofs.

        It’s advised to plan for longer journey times and cancellations, they say, as road, rail, air and ferry services may be affected.

        Power cuts may occur, with the potential to affect other services, such as mobile phone coverage, caution is also urged to stay away from the shore due to large waves and beach debris on roads and seafronts.

      • John Hall

        Calais Port chief speaks after migrant deaths in English Channel

        People who put migrants on boats to the UK in rough weather conditions are murderers, the head of Calais port has said.

        Jean-Marc Puissesseau told BBC News: “I think the people who are paid by the migrants to get to your country, with such bad weather, with such rough sea, they are murderers.

        “They are really murderers.

        “They don’t have any success trying to cross with these weather conditions. The sea is cold and the waves are big.

        “They are murderers, and the poor migrants who have spent months and months to come to here, and who die so close to their dream… I don’t know what to do really.”

      • John Hall

        London forecast for tonight and Thursday morning

        The Met Office says: “Cloudy this evening with some drizzle possible. A band of light rain moving southeast after midnight.

        “This may clear north-western areas later, perhaps giving a touch of ground frost here. Minimum temperature 1 °C.”

        On Thursday morning “there will be early cloud and light rain in the southeast soon clearing.”

        “Otherwise, a cold and bright start with sunny spells. A little more cloud developing later in the day. Maximum temperature 7 °C.”

      • John Hall

        Calais Port chief speaks after migrant deaths in English Channel

        People who put migrants on boats to the UK in rough weather conditions are murderers, the head of Calais port has said.

        Jean-Marc Puissesseau told BBC News: “I think the people who are paid by the migrants to get to your country, with such bad weather, with such rough sea, they are murderers.

        “They are really murderers.

        “They don’t have any success trying to cross with these weather conditions. The sea is cold and the waves are big.

        “They are murderers, and the poor migrants who have spent months and months to come to here, and who die so close to their dream… I don’t know what to do really.”

      • John Hall

        Weather outlook for Friday – Sunday

        Rain will clear on Friday, severe-gales and wintry-showers following by Saturday.

        Snow possible almost anywhere, but only settling on hills.

        Frosty nights. Fine start Sunday, wet later in the west.

      • John Hall

        Storm Arwen

        The Met Office have said Storm Arwen has been named and is forecast to bring a period of very strong winds and cold weather to the UK from Friday into Saturday.

        Disruption to travel and infrastructure is likely over the coming days with warnings in force.

        In its amber warning, the Met Office said: "Storm Arwen will bring high northerly winds southwards across Scotland during Friday afternoon and evening, the highest winds then becoming confined to northeast England early Saturday.

        "Gusts of 65 to 75mph are expected in coastal areas with gusts in excess of 75mph in a few places."

        The Scottish Environment Protection Agency said coastal areas were expected to see the worst of the weather.

      • John Hall

        Saying goodbye to Autumn

        Met Office forecaster Stephen Keates said: “We’re noticing the cold more because November has been so mild until now. It feels like we are saying goodbye to autumn.”

        Temperatures last week hit 17C (62F) but have returned to the 9C seasonal average.

        The colder weather has arrived from Iceland and is set to dominate into early December, although experts are warning of a wetter than normal winter.

        Forecasters at WX Charts say people living as far south at the West Midlands may be hit by up to six centimetres and The Weather Outlook has said there could be up to 20 inches of snow

        There’s a 70 per cent chance of powder in Birmingham by the weekend.

      • John Hall

        Flood warning

        Britain is set for more disastrous floods this winter – and two in three households at risk don’t think it’ll happen to them.

        More than 1.5million people are unprepared for the chaos to come as expert forecasters at the Met Office predict an above average rainfall is more likely in the next three months.

        A cold snap, heavy wind and extra rainfall are on the way as the Environment Agency sounds the alarm bell for the 5.2million who are at risk in England to get ready now.

        And there’s a 30 per cent chance this winter will be more wet than average, Met chiefs say.

        Flood defences have already saved 200,000 properties from getting flooded since 2019, but every year thousands are still caught out.

      • John Hall

        How to prepare for a flood

        • If you’re about to be flooded: Check the National Flood Forum or speak to a Floodline adviser to find out how to stay safe during a flood.
        • You can check if there’s currently a flood warning in your area.
        • Contact your local council to find out where to get sandbags. You can also get them from some DIY or building supplies shops.
        • If you need to travel – Check flood warnings and road travel information.
        • Get advice from the National Flood Forum about how to protect your property and how much this will cost
        • Make a personal flood plan for your home, business or community building
        • Get insurance advice from the National Flood Forum
        • Collect evidence of flood risks – such as completing a Flood Risk Report

        How to turn on the iPhone snow function

        First, make sure you’re updated to iOS 15 – go to Settings > General > Software Update.

        Then grant the Weather app your location info, otherwise it won’t work.

        Go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services > Weather and select Always.

        You’ll get even better alerts if you grant Precise Location access.

        Next, make sure the Weather app can send notifications.

        Go to Settings > Notifications > Weather > Allow Notifications, and then select which type of alerts you want.

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