A yellow warning has been issued by the Met Office for northern parts of the UK from Monday with frequent and heavy hail and snow showers set to affect millions of people, with those in Scotland and Northern Ireland most likely to face the brunt of the wintery weather.
Met Office spokesman Luke Miall told express.co.uk that in higher areas, we “could well be seeing an accumulation of potentially as much as 10cm of snow”.
He said the strong winds and snow showers will create “blizzard-like conditions” for many as bitterly cold temperatures grip much of the country over the coming days.
The warnings are in place until 11am on Wednesday and the Met Office has warned that travel delays and power cuts are likely.
The Met Office’s chief forecaster said: “Showers will be accompanied by hail and lightning at times, particularly across northern and western Scotland.
“Here in particular there is potential for disruption to power supplies from frequent lightning strikes.
“Strong winds are also expected, with the potential for temporary blizzard conditions and drifting of lying snow, particularly over high ground.”
The bad weather could even impact mobile phone coverage in northern parts, with the north-west of England set for heavy rain and strong winds which will move southeastwards across the rest of the country over the first few days of the week.
Meanwhile the rest of the UK can expect rain and strong winds at the start of the week.
While the rain is expected to clear later on to make way for sunny spells, the temperatures look set to remain low – Londoners can expect highs of 5C to 6C with temperatures falling as low as 1C or 2C during the night.
Outside of the city, in the south east temperatures could reach below zero on Wednesday and Thursday night.
Sunny spells will become more frequent as the week continues but heavy showers will also affect most of the country.
A Met Office spokesman said: “A polar maritime air mass will feed in behind the rain on Monday, turning things colder and windy with frequent showers bringing some snow.”
A spokesperson for The Weather Channel said: “The north and west will experience unsettled conditions over the weekend as a deep area of low pressure near Iceland begins to move towards Scotland bringing frontal systems over the British Isles.
“This activity is expected to continue into next week.”