- Britain has experienced its coldest temperatures in four years as the mercury fell to as low as -14.1C overnight
- It was recorded in Braemar, Aberdeenshire, in the Scottish Highlands and forecasters say it could yet get colder
- Parts of London also remain underwater after the River Thames burst its banks at Greenwich on Friday evening
- Widespread frost, wintry showers and icy conditions are now forecast across much of UK over the next few days
Valentine’s Day has brought with it the coldest night Britain has seen in four years as an Arctic-driven cold snap tightened its grip and sent temperatures plunging to -14C in the Scottish Highlands.
But there could yet be even colder weather on the way, forecasters warn, with wintry showers, widespread frost and icy conditions expected across much of the UK over the coming days.
The mercury fell to -14.1C in Braemar, Aberdeenshire, the lowest since 2012 when temperatures dropped to -15.6C in Holbeach, Lincolnshire, while in London several upmarket parts of the capital remained underwater as cars were swallowed up by flooding from the River Thames.
Severe weather warnings have now been issued for northern England and Scotland, where the mercury could fall as low as minus 15C in some places next week.
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Blanketed: Valentine’s Day has brought with it the coldest night Britain has seen in four years as temperatures plunged to -14C in the Scottish Highlands. Meanwhile, roads near Chollerford, Northumberland, were covered in snow this morning (pictured)
Police were called after a supermarket delivery van ended up on its side on a road near Hexham, Northumberland, as icy conditions hit
A jet skier takes part in round one of the UK Battle of the Pilots jet ski championships, which took place at Blyth beach, Northumberland
The Met Office says the average temperatures today in the north of England will be between 3-5C, compared to 5-8C in the south, but it will feel closer to freezing for most because of the icy winds.
Meanwhile, up to 15cm (5.9in) of snow is expected on higher ground, while wintry showers have also been forecast in Exmoor and Dartmoor in the South West.
The Environment Agency has issued nine flood warnings – meaning flooding is expected and immediate action required – and 58 flood alerts across England and Wales.
The warnings come after the Thames Barrier was closed on Friday for the first time this winter when the river burst its banks at Greenwich.
The Met Office has warned that persistent rain, sleet and snow over southern parts of Scotland and northern England has brought the risk of ice forming on roads.
A motorist had to clear the snow from her car near Wark, Northumberland, today as the winter weather took hold of northern England
Winter wonderland: Temperatures plunged across the UK last night (left), with the mercury falling to -14C in the Scottish Highlands (right)
Wrapped up warm: Two cyclists enjoyed a pedal along the snowy landscapes of Kielder Park Forest, Northumberland, this morning
Lonely: A horse stands in a snow-covered field near Rowley, County Durham, today after much of the area was dusted with the white stuff
Walkers on Blyth beach in Northumberland braved the chilly temperatures as Britain remained in the grip of a cold snap on Valentine’s Day
Determined: A pair of sheep were spotted making their way through the snow after wintry weather arrived on Dartmoor in Devon today
Moorland and trees were covered in snow as Dartmoor shivered in the recent freezing temperatures which have descended on the UK
Forecaster Marco Petagna said: ‘Northern England and Scotland will see wintry showers in land which will bring sleet and snow.
‘Temperatures could fall to minus 8C or even minus 10C across the hills in Scotland. More widely it will be just below freezing in northern England.
‘Some areas could see five to 10cm of snow, possibly 15cm on higher ground in Scotland and the top of the Pennines.’
COLDEST BRITISH TEMPERATURES RECORDED IN THE PAST FIVE YEARS
2016: -14.1C in Braemar, Aberdeenshire
2015: -13.7C in Loch Glascarnoch, Scottish Highlands
2014: -7.7C in Altnaharra, Sutherland, Scottish Highlands
2013: -13.6C in Buntingford, Hertfordshire
2012: -15.6C in Holbeach, Lincolnshire
The coldest temperature on record is -27.2C in Braemar, Aberdeenshire, on 10 January 1982
Chris Hogan, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, said between one and four centimetres of snow was expected widely across northern Scotland, while Cumbria, Northumberland and Durham could see between one and three centimetres.
He added: ‘Temperatures could fall to minus 10C on higher ground across the Highlands. It may be minus 15C in some isolated spots, like on the tops of mountains.’
The mercury may struggle to get above freezing across the Midlands, Mr Hogan said.
The chilly weather is set to continue with most of the UK facing an average temperature of minus 4C on Monday night and into Tuesday, according to MeteoGroup.
The cold snap comes days after the country was hit by the strong winds of Storm Imogen. Electricity had to be restored to thousands of homes left without power by the 100mph gusts.
RSPCA inspector Mike Reid, 54, has not been found after he vanished going to the aid of around 30 gannets stranded on rocks near Penzance, Cornwall.
Meanwhile, bookmaker Coral has cut the odds on it being the wettest February on record from 4-6 to 1-2. The firm is also offering odds of 2-1 that the record wind speed of 173mph will be broken.
Coral spokesman John Hill said: ‘The gamble on this month being the wettest February we have ever seen in the UK has picked up pace over the last week and following another flurry of bets, the odds now suggest it is very likely that we will be in for a record month of rainfall.’
Descending on Britain: The Arctic-driven cold snap (pictured from space) has tightened its grip on Britain and sent temperatures plunging
Chilly: Severe weather warnings have now been issued for northern England and Scotland. Pictured is the sun rising at St Mary’s Lighthouse in Whitley Bay near Newcastle upon Tyne this morning as large swathes of Britain woke up to a freezing cold Valentine’s Day
A car was left partly submerged in water in Richmond, south-west London, yesterday after heavy rainfall brought flooding to the capital
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