UK weather forecast for snow and prolonged cold spell

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The UK is entering a prolonged cold spell which could bring one of the earliest significant snowfalls since 1993, according to weather forecasters.

Northern and eastern parts of the UK are expected to bear the brunt of the wintry conditions.

Overnight on Wednesday, 15-20cm (6-8in) of snow could fall in Scotland and 2-5cm (1-2in) in north-east England.

BBC forecaster Matt Taylor said: "It's not just a short, sharp shock, it'll be around well into next week."

He added: "We've had snow earlier than this, but to have as much as this across a large part of the country, we have to go back to about 1993."

The Met Office has issued flash warnings of widespread icy roads and drifting snow across much of northern Scotland and the Borders, north-east England, and Yorkshire and Humber from Wednesday afternoon into Thursday morning.

There are less severe warnings in place for snow right across northern and eastern Scotland and eastern England from Northumberland to the south coast from Thursday through to Sunday.

Wales and south-west England could also see snow on Friday.

Daytime temperatures in central London on Saturday could fall to around 2C (35F), compared with an average of 9C (48F) for the time of year.

In south-east Scotland, the temperature could struggle to get above 0C (32F).

Snow has already fallen this winter across the Pennine hills and the Scottish Highlands, with some roads forced to close.

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