Temperatures in the UK have plummeted to extreme lows in the build up to Christmas with snow, ice and fog causing widespread disruption. These severely cold temperatures have been blamed on an arctic maritime air mass and members of the public are being urged to take extra caution when travelling to work.
Meanwhile those working from home have been encouraged to heat their homes to 18 degrees or above to protect themselves and family members. The UK has experienced extreme spells of warm weather earlier in the year and it seems this winter, that it is set to face spells of extremely cold weather. But what has caused the cold snap in the UK and when is it predicted to warm up?
Here is everything you need to know.
Why is it so cold in the UK?
Temperatures have dropped drastically across the UK this week and this cold weather has come from Scandinavian based countries such as Norway in a weather phenomenon known as ‘Troll of Trondheim’. A combination of high pressure over Greenland and an area of low pressure over Scandinavia has resulted in the cold Arctic air spreading southwards and hitting areas across the UK.
While the Met Office claims the temperatures are not exceptional for winter in the UK, it has been described as “the most significant and widespread spell of cold conditions since February 2021.”
What is the weather forecast for the weekend?
The Met Office are predicting that most parts of the UK will see slightly milder weather by the end of the weekend. However, this spell of slightly warmer weather is expected to be short-lived and the weather is expected to plummet once more in the weeks building up to Christmas.
Here is the weather forecast for the remainder of this week according to the Met Office:
Thursday 15 December
Further wintry showers are expected to reach Northern Ireland and Scotland while England and Wales are expected to experience severe frost. Outbreaks of sleet and snow could develop in the northwest of England in the evening.
Friday 16 December
Outbreaks of sleet and snow are expected to continue in Scotland and Northern Ireland. It is expected to remain very cold elsewhere with early hours of freezing fog clearing to sunny spells later in the afternoon.
Saturday 17 December
Cold with wintry showers in the north of England and parts of Scotland. The weather is mostly expected to remain dry elsewhere but still very cold.
Sunday 18 December
Temperatures are expected to become much milder at the end of the week across the UK. The weather is expected to remain very windy and there will also be heavy rain, preceded by snow in many areas.