With the festive season fast approaching, speculation over whether we could be getting a white Christmas this year has already begun – and it’s looking like good news for snow-loving Brits.
The Met Office said there is a chance of snow falling in the UK on December 25 in its latest predictions released this weekend.
A statement posted online yesterday said: “High pressure is likely to dominate from mid December, with fairly ‘blocked’ conditions becoming established across the UK.
“This weather pattern would lead to drier than average conditions and lighter winds.
“Interludes of more unsettled weather are expected to be fairly limited, although these could still lead to some snow over high ground in the north.
“It is likely to be rather a cold period, with temperatures below average for the time of year, and a continued risk of overnight frosts.
“Whilst it may be relatively mild at times, temperatures on the whole through this period are likely to be below average.”
The report was released as temperatures were set to plunge across the country this week – with a chilly -3 predicted in some areas.
There will be bright sunshine across most of the UK on Monday and Tuesday, but the mercury is set to dip below freezing, before slightly clambering back up on Wednesday.
A spokesman for weather forecaster Meteogroup said: “It looks set to be a brighter day on Monday, with sunny spells and patchy cloud around.
“The best of the sunshine will be in central and southern areas, with light easterly winds.
“On Tuesday, it will remain dry and bright with spells of sunshine in central and southern regions.
“However, it will be mostly cloudy elsewhere, and a band of rain will move into north-west Scotland.
“It will be windy in the north.”
Snow is synonymous with Christmas, but many Britons rarely see it on December 25 .
The last official white Christmas was in 2010 when snow was widespread across Northern Ireland, Scotland, parts of Wales, and the Midlands, north-east and far south-west of England.
It was an extremely unusual day as there was snow on the ground at 83 per cent of weather stations – the highest amount ever recorded – and snow or sleet at 19 per cent of stations.
The Met Office declares a white Christmas if one snowflake is observed falling in the 24 hours of December 25 somewhere in the UK.
That has happened 38 times in the last 54 years.
The Met Office said Britain is more likely to see snow between January and March than in December, with climate change reducing the chances of a white Christmas.
Snow or sleet falls an average 3.9 days in December, compared to 5.3 days in January, 5.6 days in February and 4.2 days in March.
Last week’s snowfall in north-west and south-west England, Northern Ireland, western Scotland and parts of Wales was the UK’s first big blast of wintry weather.
As the storm caused travel chaos and disruption for workers and pupils, bookies slashed the odds of a white Christmas.
Odds as low as 3-1 suggest Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow are the most likely cities to have snowfall on Christmas Day.
William Hill is offering odds of 5-1 on snowfall in Belfast, Leeds, Liverpool, London (Heathrow), Manchester and Newcastle.
It gave odds of 7-1 for Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Norwich and Penzance.