Cold weather is again on the way for the UK. Later this week colder conditions will spread south, bringing a mixture of sunny spells and snow showers from Wednesday onwards. Temperatures for many will be below normal for the time of year and the wind chill, due to strong winds, will make it feel very cold.
Snow showers are expected to affect parts of the northern half of the UK on Wednesday and Thursday and the Met Office has issued a yellow severe weather warning for the potential impacts and this will be updated as required this week. Don’t be surprised to see some snow showers across southern areas too, but these are not currently expected to be heavy enough for the snow to settle. The northerly winds and cold weather are likely to continue into the weekend.
Is it due to the polar vortex?
There have been reports the cold weather is due to a “displaced polar vortex”. The large-scale low pressure area in the stratosphere, known as the Polar Vortex, is displaced towards Russia and looks likely to stay that way over the next few days. However this is not directly responsible for changes in the weather during the coming days. The cold northerly winds we are expecting at the end of the week are not unusual for winter.
What is the jet stream doing?
The jet stream is forecast to move south of the UK from Wednesday onwards. This means we will be on the ‘cold side’ of the jet and cold air from the poles/Arctic will work its way southwards to affect the UK.
Is the snowstorm in the USA coming our way?
The snowstorm affecting the east coast of the USA is not coming towards the UK. It is expected to move away from the States, crossing the Atlantic to the south of the UK to bring heavy rain to Spain and Portugal at the end of the week.