UK weather latest: Snow falls across Britain causing flight cancellations as 'mini beast from the East' strikes

More than 100 flights cancelled at Heathrow as Met Office warns rural communities could be cut off

Chiara Giordano
Saturday 17 March 2018 11:24
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UK weather: The latest Met Office forecast

Snow has blanketed parts of the UK and amber weather warnings are in place as a “mini beast from the East” sweeps in.

The worst of the weather is expected to arrive later into Saturday and last until Sunday morning.

The Met Office has issued the second-highest level of weather warning for snow and ice for the Midlands, North West England, and Yorkshire and Humber, as well as London, the South East, and the east of England.

The weather warning is expected to remain in place from 4pm Saturday to 9am Sunday, and a yellow warning for snow and ice is also in force for the whole of Saturday across most of Britain.

More than 100 flights to or from Heathrow on Saturday have been cancelled ahead of the predicted bad weather, and other airports may face problems later.

Travel delays on roads and rail are also likely, and rural communities face being cut off.

“It will be bitterly cold with some snow for many places over the weekend,” said Met Office meteorologist Alex Burkhill.

”There are some very strong winds, meaning it could feel as low as minus 7 or minus 8 for some people.“

Snow showers are expected to become more frequent through Saturday evening and night with icy patches also developing on some untreated roads, pavements and cycle paths.

Sunday is also likely to see further snow, especially for parts of the South West, where as much as 25cm could fall on higher ground.

”Even at lower levels we could see 5-10cm or even 10-15cm,“ said Mr Burkhill.

”It's not common for these areas to see this type of snow – it won't be the same amount we saw a few weeks ago, but it is still likely to be enough to cause some problems.“

Drivers have been urged to be prepared before setting out on journeys this weekend, with Highways England advising motorists to avoid trans-Pennine roads ”if possible“.

Highways England has issued a severe weather alert for snow and is advising road users in the North East and East Midlands to check the weather forecast and road conditions before travelling on Saturday.

The cold weather should only last a few days, however, with temperatures expected to be back to average for this time of year by Tuesday.

Meteorologist Martin Bowles said the weekend's weather could be dubbed a ”mini beast from the East" as it was a smaller version of the system that brought freezing temperatures and widespread disruption as the month began.

”We don't expect anything like the same impact as a result of it, although there will be some snow about,” he said.

Additional reporting by PA

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