Thermometers will nudge double figures over the next few days with sunshine and blue skies bringing welcome relief from the wind and rain. High pressure will hold Atlantic storm systems at bay while steering mild westerly winds into the UK, forecasters say. However Britons are warned to make the most of the fine weather with winter threatening to deliver one more parting shot.
Freezing easterly winds drawn in by the same area of high pressure as it drifts towards Scandinavia threaten to bring a late blast of snow and ice.
John Hammond, meteorologist for Weathertrending, warned further wintery downpours are possible before the end of the month.
Cold weather could last into the start of spring thanks to ‘blocking’ high pressure drawing cold air in from the east, he added.
He said: “There will be an ongoing chance that easterly winds will bring much colder air towards us, whether that translates to snowfall is another matter.
“It will rely on a supply of moister air into the mix, perhaps as Atlantic weather fronts try to oust the cold block.
UK weather forecast: Britain is braced for one final polar blast this winter
“A repeat of last year’s extreme cold is very unlikely, but I suspect that frosty weather may linger on into March.
“And for those wanting late snowfall, it may well be that the greatest chance will occur just before milder, moister air finally ousts the cold that is resident across the UK.
“A number of snowfall events are possible – these most likely in association with blocked easterly spells.
“There is the chance of one or more easterly spells of weather, bringing enhanced cold weather.”
Colder weather may arrive as early as next week and there will be an ongoing risk of snow through the next few weeks, he added.
The Met Office said temperatures will reach 12C (53.6F) in parts of the country this week as spring makes an early appearance.
Clear skies will see temperatures plunge overnight bringing a risk of frost over the next few mornings.
UK weather forecast: Temperatures are set to drop across Britain
Met Office meteorologist Bonnie Diamond said: “High pressure is currently over the Continent and that is going to bring a south-westerly airflow during the first half of the week.
“Temperatures will reach double figures so it will feel milder during the day although there will be a risk of overnight frosts when there is a break in the cloud.”
Forecasts are still not firm on whether Britain is facing a late freeze although there are signs of cold weather making a comeback this month, she warned.
She said: “After this week there is a chance of further cold spells returning with a Polar maritime airmass and there could be a risk of snow.
“While there is a chance of a return to wintery weather, it is too early to be certain.”
UK weather forecast: While spring is rapidly approaching, Britain is facing one final cold snap
The Met Office’s long-range outlook warns of a risk of snow into the start of spring with further bouts of stormy weather also possible.
It states: “We are likely to see occasional spells of wind and rain arriving from the Atlantic to affect the British Isles, although high pressure is also likely to be sat to our north or northeast and should help to give some temporary settled spells of weather too.
“The wet and windy conditions may arrive following a spell of drier and colder weather which may give some snowfall, most likely over high ground, but with the potential for some snow to affect low levels too.”
Weather models show cold Arctic air sweeping into northern Britain this weekend before temperatures widely sink below freezing.
Snow charts reveal a risk of wintry showers across Scotland, northern and central England and Wales through the final third of February.
In the meantime Britain is about to start warming up with temperatures set to rocket above the norm for the time of year.
Southern regions will hit the 12C (53.6F) mark before the end of the week with even Scotland and northern England likely to hit double figures.
High pressure will remain in charge through the week bringing clear skies, settled conditions and sunshine to most parts of Britain.
Weather fronts will brush parts of the north and the western England bringing some wind and rain, according to Weatheronline’s Claire Darbinyan.
She said: “As high pressure builds over Europe, the UK and Ireland come into a mild southerly air flow which will allow temperatures to rise until next weekend.
“Occasional fronts will bring wet and windy weather at times to northern and western areas; drier and brighter in the southeast.
“Early morning frosts will become less common as the week goes on and fog will become an increasing risk.”
Exacta Weather forecaster James Madden warned Britain is not out of the woods when it comes to another icy blast.
He said: “Further snow can be expected in the forecast for February, and as a whole temperatures are likely to be below average for the month.
“We are expecting above-average rainfall and well above-average snowfall in many areas.”
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