The UK is expected to face extremely cold conditions as low as 3C (37F) from Tuesday after officially recording its hottest New Year’s Day in history.
Temperatures are expected to drop to around 7 ° C (44.6 ° F) in London and Cardiff and freezing 3 ° C in Edinburgh as an arctic cold begins to weave its way through the country.
Forecasters have now issued yellow weather warnings for wind and snow in northern Scotland for Tuesday and Wednesday, with gusts of up to 70 mph and “blizzard conditions” expected to hit the region.
A weather warning for thunderstorms was also issued for southern England today as a band of stormy weather heads from Exeter to Norwich.
The cold forecast comes just a day after Britain officially recorded its hottest New Year’s Day in history as the Met Office confirmed temperatures exceeded 16 ° C (61 ° F) in the capital yesterday.
Waves crash against the harbor wall on a beach in Folkestone, Kent, today as parts of the country brace themselves for strong winds and snow
A group of daredevil swimmers take a dip in the rough seas at West Bay in Dorset as the area was windy and overcast today
A young girl flies her kite in strong winds on the beach at Folkestone, Kent, as storm clouds gather in the area today
A group of people stroll along the Thames Path on New Years Day as the nation braces for a drop in temperatures
People take their dogs for a walk along the Thames as the country benefited from mild temperatures over the weekend
Water covers the Welney wash area as water levels in the Old Bedford and Delph rivers continue to rise
Today showers will dissipate in most parts of the UK except Northern Ireland and West England and Wales where they will remain wet for most of the UK. part of the night.
However, thunderstorms are expected in southern England from noon to around 6 p.m. today.
A bright, dry start is expected for many tomorrow, but with showers for northwest England, Northern Ireland, Wales and southern Scotland.
Showers will persist for the North West of England with sunny intervals expected for the Midlands and parts of Scotland.
However, by Tuesday temperatures will be cooler, with some showers for Northern Ireland and Wales.
Yesterday, meteorologists confirmed that temperatures officially reached a new record high of 61 F (16.2 C) at St James’s Park in London on Saturday.
That provisional figure broke the previous record of 15.6 ° C (60 ° F), despite much of the country continuing to experience an “unusually mild” start to the new year.
Temperatures also peaked at nearly 16C (61F) in Merryfield in Somerset and Nantwich in Cheshire on Friday, breaking the previous record of 15C (59F).
The Met Office said two new all-time records for New Years Eve and New Years’ Day created the “unusual situation of a weather system possibly breaking weather records for two days in calendar years. distinct “.
The milder-than-usual start to the year saw people happily participate in traditional New Years swims across the country, including at Derby Pool, New Brighton, Wirral and West Sussex.
Speaking before the record was broken, forecaster Craig Snell said: “It’s not impossible.
“This is the first time since December 2016 that we have three consecutive days to reach 15C (59F). It has been a prolonged benign period.
“It may break records, but I was much more confident that we would see record high temperatures on New Years Eve, as the New Year’s record is a bit higher. It will always be an exceptionally mild start until ‘ in 2022.
Mr Snell added that the average temperature in December and early January is generally around 7 ° C or 8 ° C, and that the warmer temperatures this year are due to a southwest wind blowing through the country.
He added that the warmer temperatures are generally localized, but “many places” recorded highs of 15C in December. However, he said January could see a drop in temperatures.
Somerset House in London confirmed yesterday that it will close its ice rink on New Years Day due to the warmer temperatures.
A woman walks past an already blossoming cherry tree in St James’s Park, as the British Meteorological Office recorded the UK’s highest temperature on New Years Day
Woman throws seaweed for her dog on Padstow beach as UK experiences hottest new year on record
The sun sets over Blackpool Beach on New Years Day as the country has its hottest New Years on record
Temperatures are forecast to drop to around 7 ° C (44.6 ° F) in London and Cardiff and freezing 3 ° C in Edinburgh as an arctic cold begins to spread across the country.
A weather warning for thunderstorms was also issued for southern England today as a swathe of stormy weather heads towards Norwich
Forecasters have issued a yellow weather warning for wind and snow in northern Scotland for Tuesday and Wednesday
A Somerset House spokesperson tweeted: “Skate update: Due to the effect of the ongoing warm temperatures on the quality of the ice, we had to make the difficult decision to also close our rink on January 1st. All customers are contacted directly and reimbursed in full.
“We are currently handling a very high level of customer inquiries, so it may take longer than usual to respond. We are very sorry for this inconvenience and are working hard to make sure we can reopen as soon as possible. We will update as soon as possible if there is any further impact on future dates. ‘
It came after Mayor of London Sadiq Khan canceled the city’s traditional fireworks display due to the threat of Covid-19.
This week, Boris Johnson urged people to get tested before they meet up for the New Years festivities.
He said: “Everyone should enjoy the New Years but in a careful and reasonable way – do a test, a breakdown, think of others but most of all, get a reminder.”
The Prime Minister will decide next week whether to impose further restrictions on coronaviruses to limit socialization indoors.
Mr Johnson has chosen not to impose new restrictions between Christmas and New Years Eve, but the increase in the number of Covid cases could see new measures implemented.
It comes as NHS bosses have warned the government “must be prepared to introduce tougher restrictions at real speed if they are needed”.
Chris Hopson, the chief supplier of the NHS, said further restrictions “may be needed at a sustained rate if the evidence warrants it” as he said health officials “still do not know” if he There will be an increase in senior hospitalizations that could trigger Mr Johnson to take action.