Snow is likely to fall in many parts of northern England on Thursday, with the possibility of an East 2 animal in the middle of next week.
Met Office meteorologist Alex Burkill said freezing rain could turn to snow over parts of Scotland and northeast England from Wednesday evening to Thursday morning.
“It will continue to rain across the UK through Thursday itself and this could bring some more snow south by Thursday,” he said.
“On Thursday afternoon we could investigate the risk of snow in many parts of northern England and the Midlands and perhaps a little further east.”
Although there are warnings of up to 30 cm of snow in Scotland, Burkill said rainfall “would help ensure that there isn’t much snow by Thursday”.
“For northern England we could be looking at six inches, maybe eight inches, on the highest stretches by the end of Thursday,” he said.
“Further south, I’m not sure if that much will be settled in the Midlands in particular, if at all.”
He said the central and eastern parts of England could see “maybe an inch or two” of snow on the highest stretches.
“But because of the wetness the soil will cause and the amount of rain that is also mixing in, it is unlikely that a large amount will settle,” he said.
Temperatures could drop to minus 7 ° C in east England on Wednesday night and possibly minus 11 ° C or minus 12 ° C in Scotland, he said.
“By Wednesday and Thursday, I think if you’re stuck under the rain and you have that snow, temperatures could be really suppressed even during the day,” Burkill said.
“Some places may scratch just above freezing on some days, so in some places between zero and 2 ° C.”
More wintry weather is expected to arrive on Saturday and this could bring “heavy rain as well as significant snow, especially to central parts of England”.
It’s possible temperatures will drop further next week, Burkill said, and there is “a very good chance” that a beast from the East 2 will come “by the middle of next week”.
The first beast from the east, as the significant snowfall in February 2018 was called, occurred when a sudden event of stratospheric warming sent icy winds from Siberia.
Mr Burkill said weather like this would require “a high pressure blockage area, particularly in the north of the UK, which would be affected by the cold east winds” for the next week.
“There are some signs that we might get something similar by the middle of next week, so we’re looking for that,” he said.
“It is too early to be sure, but there are some signs.
“Some models suggest that we could get cold air from the east and northeast, which is very cold at this time of year, but by no means a guarantee.”