With freezing temperatures dipping as low as -12C, Britain is even colder than Iceland

A A A

Britain has been hit by more freezing weather, with forecasters warning of widespread snowfalls today. The Met Office issued severe weather warnings for eastern England and Scotland last night, saying that snow and freezing fog would make the roads particularly dangerous.

But although winds will bring a biting chill factor, temperatures will rise during the day and tonight the country will start thawing out. Snow was expected to have fallen last night again in Northern Ireland while the north-east of England is due to receive some of the most persistent snow. The west of the country is expected to avoid most of the snow but will suffer from severe ice and fog.

East Anglia, eastern Kent and East Sussex have seen the worst conditions so far, with some roads closed because of snow, and severe delays to train services.

The cold weather meant that much of Britain was colder than Moscow or Reykjavik yesterday. At Aviemore in Scotland - where temperatures plummeted to minus 12C on Wednesday night - yesterday's lunchtime high was only minus 7.1C.

Teesside airport in Co Durham also recorded a daytime high of minus 7C, while temperatures in Nottingham and York peaked at minus 4C. The extreme cold also caused the harbour at Whitehaven marina in Cumbria to freeze over.

By early afternoon, a new weather system had swept in from the west, bringing up to an inch of snow to parts of Northern Ireland, Wales, and south- west and central England. A second system was following, which forecasters warned would lead to more heavy snow showers last night and into today.

Paul Knightley, of the Met Office, said: "Many places could get a couple of inches of snow and there could be up to four inches in East Anglia, the East Midlands, north-east England and Scotland. It is going to be pretty awful in the Scottish Highlands as winds will be strengthening."

But by the end of the day, the thaw will have started with overnight temperatures at 2C in Scotland. During the day, parts of Wales will bask in 13C sunshine, and as the milder weather continues across the country tomorrow, New Year's Eve revellers are unlikely to freeze.

Yesterday, the RAC reported quiet roads as many people continued their Christmas holidays or worked from home. Some train services were disrupted and race meetings at Catterick and Newbury were called off.

Police fear that a man found dead on the steps of a town hall in freezing temperatures may have frozen to death.

The man, in his forties, dressed in a bomber jacket, shirt and jeans, was found by a passer-by in the doorway of West Bromwich town hall at around 10am on Wednesday.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) warned people to stay away from frozen waterways and to take care when sledging.

The British Trust for Ornithology said the freezing conditions meant food was in short supply for birds. It asked people to put out their Christmas left-overs, including turkey, along with drinking water.

Life and Style
The new Windows 10 Start Menu
tech
News
More than 90 years of car history are coming to an end with the abolition of the paper car-tax disc
newsThis and other facts you never knew about the paper circle - completely obsolete today
Arts and Entertainment
There has been a boom in ticket sales for female comics, according to an industry survey
comedyFirst national survey reveals Britain’s comedic tastes
Arts and Entertainment
Hilary North's 'How My Life Has Changed', 2001
books(and not a Buzzfeed article in sight)
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Mystery man: Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike in '‘Gone Girl'
films... by the director David Fincher
News
Kim Jong Un gives field guidance during his inspection of the Korean People's Army (KPA) Naval Unit 167
newsSouth Korean reports suggest rumours of a coup were unfounded
News
people'I’d rather have Fred and Rose West quote my characters on childcare'
Travel
Bruce Chatwin's novel 'On the Black Hill' was set at The Vision Farm
travelOne of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
Arts and Entertainment
Gay and OK: a scene from 'Pride'
filmsUS film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
News
people
Life and Style
Magic roundabouts: the gyratory system that has excited enthusiasts in Swindon
motoringJust who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Arts and Entertainment
You could be in the Glastonbury crowd next summer if you follow our tips for bagging tickets this week
music
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Business Analyst - Surrey - Permanent - Up to £50k DOE

£40000 - £50000 Per Annum Excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd:...

SEN Teaching Assistant Runcorn

£50 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: SEN Teaching Assistant EBD , Septemb...

SEN Teaching Assistant

£50 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: SEN Teaching Assistant We are curr...

Teacher

£100 - £135 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: We are currently recruitin...

Day In a Page

Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?