WIDESPREAD wintery showers and hail are expected to blast parts of Britain today as the country braces itself for a spell of cooler weather that could bring snow to some regions.
While the past few weeks have seen unseasonably mild weather across the country, temperatures are set to drop by this weekend reaching as low as -5C overnight.
Experts say there is also the potential for a dumping of snow as a warm Atlantic weather system from the west clashes with cold air in the east.
The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning for ice to motorists travelling on untreated roads in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and northern England this morning after temperatures dipped overnight.
Issuing its “yellow” be aware graded warning, it said: “Icy stretches are expected to form on untreated surfaces, especially in places affected by showers.
“The showers will fall as snow above about 250 metres, but there may be temporary slush deposits to lower levels. The public should be aware of possible travel disruption.”
Sunny spells are expected to be interspersed with wintery showers that will progress in a southerly direction throughout today, bringing sleet, hail, thunder and some snow on high grounds.
Lindsay Dovey, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said: “Today will see sunny spells and wintry showers which are going to be pretty heavy falling as sleet and hail.
“The showers will progress down from the north throughout the day and there could be the odd lightning strikes and snow on high ground in those showers.
“Overnight they will continue over the southern parts of the UK then on Saturday morning a front coming in from the west will start move in and spread eastwards bringing in some rain.
“This could meet a band of cold air and then turn to snow.”
Ms Dovey said that temperatures will drop to between -1C and -5C in the north overnight, with a southerly low of -1C.
During Saturday and Sunday temperatures are expected to range between 4C-7C across Britain with lows of -1C during the night, she added.
Snow fell over high ground in Wales, northern parts of England and Scotland yesterday, reaching depths of between 1-4cm, MeteoGroup said.