- First major snowfall of the winter period is expected to blanket parts of Scotland, bringing travel disruption
- Cloud and rain is inching its way in from the west and will cover much of the country by later this afternoon
- Weather phenomenon, the 'La Nina effect', has also increased chance of Britain enjoying a white Christmas
Published: 08:56 EST, 19 November 2017 | Updated: 12:45 EST, 19 November 2017
The first major snowfall of the season is expected to blanket parts of of Scotland overnight as Britain gears up for a week of mixed weather — ahead of an increasingly possible white Christmas.
While temperatures dropped to a chilly -4°C on Saturday night, it is not expected to dip below freezing across Scotland on tonight.
The rest of the UK should escape the wintry weather but could see heavy rain instead.
Met Office forecaster Helen Roberts told MailOnline: 'Cloudy weather will spread across more parts of the UK, with the exception being far-south parts.
A horse ambles around a frost-covered field as the sun rises over chilly Swillington, in West Yorkshire. Britain is set for a mixed week of weather ahead
Frosty mornings will usher in Britain's first significant snowfall in parts of Scotland later, with several centimetres expected to fall overnight and tomorrow morning
Early morning mist shrouds the landscape around Corfe Castle in Dorset, which was lit up by orange sunshine today. Temperatures have eased throughout the day but parts of Scotland are expected to see snow later on
Winter is coming: This picturesque scene shows the rolling hills of Dorset this morning set against the backdrop of Corfe Castle
The Met Office is predicting a changeable and unsettled picture for the coming week, with a particularly wet and windy day across the UK on Thursday
'Rain will fall as snow across Scottish mountains and that rain will continue first thing tomorrow morning.
'The snow may cause a bit of transport disruption but should not affect [Scotland's] main cities.
'Otherwise, rain will clear away to the east, leaving a lot of cloud throughout Monday — so, quite a cloudy day tomorrow but milder than today.'
Forecasters predict further flurries of snow could hit over the following days in a wet and windy week, with gusts approaching 70mph in north-west England.
A chilly start to this morning made for clear skies throughout much of Britain. Pictured: This morning's sunrise, shot from Almscliff Crag, near Leeds, West Yorkshire
Ice crystals form across the surface of a puddle this morning near Leeds, West Yorkshire, foreshadowing colder days to come
While temperatures dropped to a chilly 25°F (-4°C) on Saturday night, it is not expected to dip below freezing across Scotland on Sunday night. Pictured: Almscliff Crag, near Leeds
A man peers over the edge of Almscliff Crag. While temperatures dropped to a chilly 25°F (-4°C) on Saturday night, it is not expected to dip below freezing across Scotland tonight
The silhouettes of two cooling towers and three wind turbines crept into visibility this morning as the sun rose over Wharfedale Valley, near Leeds
The Met Office is predicting a changeable and unsettled picture for the coming week, with a particularly wet and windy day across the UK on Thursday.
A band of heavy rain affecting Northern Ireland, central and northern England and Scotland will move through between Tuesday and Wednesday.
Gusts close to 70mph in England’s north-west and 60mph in the south are forecast for Wednesday night, with the Isle of Man bearing the brunt of the stormiest gusts in the Irish Sea.
Forecaster Helen Roberts added: 'A few more centimetres of snow could fall into Tuesday in northern Scotland, with more snow in similar areas on Wednesday and the north Pennines at risk of wintry flurries.'
She continued: 'Strong winds ramp up on Wednesday with Thursday a particularly wet and windy day, with the
One of the most colourful sunrises of the year shone through the skies of Glastonbury this morning. Glastonbury Tor, in Somerset, is pictured
Picture-perfect: An early riser, who wasn't put off by the startlingly chilly cold snap this morning, was rewarded with a spectacular sunrise over Glastonbury Tor, Somerset
The picturesque scenes that unfolded over the skies of Glastonbury Tor this morning may maintain as more southerly parts are expected to escape the brunt of the cloudy weather
A dazzling sunrise daubs the clouds red this morning over Glastonbury Tor, in Somerset
But cloud and rain is inching its way in from the west and, by the afternoon, Northern Ireland and western Scotland will see grey skies and showers for much of the afternoon
The cold blast comes amid the expected La Niña phenomenon with below average sea temperatures leading to colder winters around the globe.
La Niña conditions are said to develop when the sea surface temperature anomaly goes below –0.5C.
The main effects of La Niña are changes in rainfall and fiercer winter climates across the globe.
The MetOffice told the Express: 'La Niña slightly increases the chances of blocking patterns over the North Atlantic and Europe in late autumn and early winter, leading to increased chances of colder-than-average conditions.'
WHY RED SKIES IN THE MORNING CAN BE JUST AS ACCURATE AS FORECASTERS
At sunset, a red sky means high pressure is moving in from the west and, therefore, the following day is usually dry and pleasant
The age-old saying 'red sky at night, shepherds delight, red sky in the morning, sailors take warning,' can often prove prove true.
A red sky at night means, generally, that fair weather is headed towards you. This is because red skies appear when dust and small particles are trapped in the atmosphere by high pressure.
As these particles scatter blue light, they leave only red light to give the sky a notable appearance.
At sunset, a red sky means high pressure is moving in from the west and, therefore, the following day is usually dry and pleasant.
A red sky in the morning indicates that a high pressure system having already moved in, which means good weather has passed, with a wet and windy low-pressure system set to move in.
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