Friday is set to be particularly cold and some parts of the UK could see snow ahead of a chilly weekend, the Met Office has said. Temperatures of 2-3C (36-37F) in the Midlands, London and eastern areas, and scattered snow showers are forecast.
Elsewhere will be a degree or two warmer, with highs of only 5C (41F) in the South West, Wales and western Scotland.
Overnight into Saturday, temperatures could potentially dip as low as minus 10C (14F) in some mountainous parts of Scotland, Met Office forecaster Sophie Yeomans said. The lowest temperature recorded so far this winter was minus 11C (12.2F) which at Cromdale in Moray, North East Scotland, on 5 December.
Ms Yeomans said: “The very lowest that we could see – and that’s up Scotland and the mountains up there – we are looking at minus 6C, minus 8C, (21-18F) so pretty cold, but I think pretty widespread across most of the UK we are going to see temperatures dipping below zero.
Snow is a possibility. The main risk is Friday. There will be showers, they’ll be quite scattered, few and far between – you’d be unlucky to catch one unless you’re on the east coast.
If they do fall, some of them will be falling as rain, some sleet and some snow.
As the weekend progresses, conditions are expected to stay cold and frosty with temperatures hovering around zero.
From Monday it should start to feel less cold, Ms Yeomans said, although maximum temperatures will still only be 5-6C (41-42F) Public Health England (PHE) issued a warning as temperatures plummeted.
The organisation’s medical director and director of health protection, Professor Paul Cosford, said: With more cold weather across all parts of England now is the time to really think how it could impact you and your family, particularly those who are very young, over 65 or who have heart or lung conditions.
Try to keep homes heated to at least 18C (64F), stock up on any essential medicine or food that you need before the cold arrives and remember that you will be warmer wearing several thin layers instead of fewer thick ones.