Cold air is beginning to exert its influence in the far north of Scotland today (Monday) and will gradually sink southwards through the early part of this week. This will bring further rain to western Scotland and then much of England and Wales on Tuesday, with totals likely to be highest in western areas.

That initial band of rain will clear to the south of the UK on Wednesday, with the UK under the influence of cold arctic air in what should be a largely drier day for many.

Temperatures will drop to below average for the time of year, with an ongoing chance through the week of ice overnight, which could result in further warnings. There is a yellow warning in force for ice overnight on Monday in the far north of Scotland.

From Thursday, there’s an increased chance of snow in some parts of the UK, with a yellow warning issued which covers much of Wales as well as northern and central England.

Met Office Deputy Chief Meteorologist Chris Almond said: “While the early part of this week will see some rain, at times heavy, gradually sinking southwards, there’s an increased signal for wintry hazards as we move through the week as cold air from the north moves over the UK.

“It’s from Thursday that the snow risk becomes more potentially impactful, as mild air attempts to move back in from the south, bumping into the cold air and increasing the chance of snow developing on the leading edge. While there are still lots of details to work out, the initial snow risk looks highest in northern England and Wales from Thursday. 1-2cm is possible to low levels, with 10-20cm possible over the highest ground within the warning area. This snow will likely gradually transition to sleet and rain later on from the south.”

With a developing weather situation, it’s likely warnings will be issued and amended through the week, with an ongoing chance of ice warnings for some. Temperatures could drop as low as –10°C in rural parts of Scotland on Wednesday night, though it will be less cold further south.

Weekend weather

Although there’s still some uncertainty on the positioning of weather fronts from Thursday and the exact position of any snow, the trend further ahead is for the colder conditions with more-scattered wintry showers to spread south, reaching most parts of the UK over the weekend, though there will be plenty of sunshine between times – but this will lead to some frost by night.