Thaw warms up shivering Britons
The whole country was enjoying a thaw today with all parts above freezing for the first time since the cold spell struck last month.
Temperatures will reach double figures in places as shivering Britons get a balmy blast of weather from the west.
Scotland, much of which ground to a halt this week in the worst snow since the 1960s, was on thaw alert after a spate of flood-related incidents from melting ice and snow.
Western areas of the UK will be warmest today, with 10C (50F) expected in the South West, north Wales and western Scotland.
Northern parts of Britain will feel slightly chillier in a brisk north west breeze.
It will stay above freezing all day and through the night, dipping to 1C in the coldest parts of the Highlands.
Colder conditions are then set to return on Sunday and into next week, with more snow and ice expected up until Christmas.
Britain has seen temperatures as low as minus 20C (-4F) since the country was gripped by the cold spell on November 23.
The weather started improving yesterday, with Strathclyde Fire & Rescue attending more than 120 flood-related incidents due to melting ice and burst pipes.
The thaw also means that pedestrians run the risk of being hit by icicles and snow falling from buildings.
And emergency services warned that rising temperatures were weakening already dangerous ice cover on frozen lochs and ponds.
Gemma Plumb, a weather forecaster for MeteoGroup, the weather forecasting arm of the Press Association said: "It is going to be a lot less cold. We will probably see a maximum temperature of between 7C (44.6F) and 10C (50F) today.
"It will be warmest in the North and West of Scotland, but the warmer front will spread all over the country.
"We'll see some of the snow starting to melt, but it is going to start getting cold again on Saturday night, with the possibility of more snow towards the end of next week."
- 1 Woman 'suffocates newborn baby in plastic bag and puts it in her desk minutes after giving birth'
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 Chinese student carries disabled friend to school every day for three years
Nepal earthquake in pictures: Photos show devastation caused by 7.8 magnitude earthquake
Royal baby: Live updates as superbug closes ward at St Mary's Hospital in London where Duchess of Cambridge is due to give birth
Nepal earthquake: Rescuers forced to dig with their bare hands in search for survivors as images show damage to historic buildings
Ed Miliband and Boris Johnson in angry clash live on BBC's Andrew Marr Show
Bali Nine executions: British grandmother on death row in Indonesia Lindsay Sandiford says she 'just wants to get it over with'
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
£26000 - £28000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistan...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...