The Met Office has issued amber and yellow weather warnings for snow and ice for much of the UK, predicting heavy snow will fall across the country and reach up to 3.9inches (10cm). Temperatures plummeted overnight, reaching the coldest they had been in winter so far, with many waking to a widespread frost and the mercury still well below feezing. Below are the latest updates radar maps and weather warning information, all times in GMT.
2.45am update: 100 take refuge in Cornish pub
More than 100 people have sought refuge at a pub high on Bodmin Moor after heavy snowfall hit the A30, leading many stranded motorists to abandon their cars.
Some of those reaching the Jamaica Inn reported trudging through snow for several miles after more than 12cm of the white stuff brought “chaos” to the cross-country route on Thursday.
The pub’s 25-year-old general manager, Sammy Wheeler, said groups and families with young children had arrived in droves after around 100 cars got stuck on a nearby stretch of the A30.
“A lot of people have abandoned their cars. Some of them have walked a good three, four or five miles,” she told the Press Association.
“People were fed up of being in a cold car and they were running out of fuel.”
1.25am update: What to do if your car is stranded in the snow
Experts have given tips on how motorists can stay safe if they are caught up in the snow.
Drivers are advised to remain in their vehicles and keep the engine running, as abandoning the car can put people at risk and slow down the clearance effort.
On the A39 in Cornwall, gritter trucks have been working to clear the snow and leaving a vehicle unattended can hinder their progress.
Motorists are also urged to keep the car’s wheels straight and avoid wheel spin, and to use a shovel or any other object to dig out snow from underneath the tyres.
Other general tips include running the car for 10 minutes every hour to ensure the engine stays warm.
It is also advisable for drivers to contact family members so they know what has happened and contact breakdown cover providers.
Friday, February 1
Light snowfall over the Tower of London
11.20pm update: Snow in Cornwall 12cm deep
There has been at least 12cm of snowfall over Bodmin Moor in Cornwall thus far according to the Met Office.
The snow is heading eastwards across southern England, and has reached Wiltshire, Hampshire, Sussex and Kent.
A number of British Airways short-haul flights from Heathrow have been cancelled due to the adverse weather.
Drivers have been trapped by the snow around Bodmin in Cornwall.
Deven and Cornwall police tweeted: “If you are still stuck on the A30 at Bodmin please sit tight. We, plus Cornwall Fire Service and Cornwall Rescue Group, are checking on vehicles to ensure everyone is safe.
At least 90 schools will be closed in Cornwall tomorrow, with another 34 in Devon shutting either completely or partially.
James Bickerton talks over live reporting from Kate Whitfield
10.10pm update: Braemar in Sctoland has fallen to -14.5C – making it colder than last night
The Met Office, on Twitter, added: “If temperatures fall lower than -15.6C, it will be the coldest night since 2010.”
Snow continues to fall across southern part of the UK.
9.25pm update: Cornwall chaos continues
Misery for drivers trapped on motorways in Cornwall continues as authorities battle to get through icy roads.
Devon and Cornwall Police urged people to stay in their cars to keep warm.
At around 8.15pm on Thursday, the force tweeted: “We have further reports of vehicles stuck on the A39 in Cornwall due to snow.
“Please stay with your vehicle and keep as warm as possible. Gritter trucks are working their way inwards from Winnards Perch and Wadebridge to get to stranded drivers.”
Matt Argyle, 46, got stuck on the A30 eastbound just before Temple after returning from St Austell.
He told the Press Association: “A police search and rescue vehicle has just driven past but that’s the first service vehicle I’ve seen.”
He had spent five hours in the same spot by 8.40pm on Thursday, but was managing to stay warm after packing a sleeping bag and some extra clothes.
“There’s no cars on the other side of the road so it must be completely blocked somewhere,” he said.
9pm update: First snow reported in London
One Twitter user tweeted: “It’s snowing in Croydon! But it’s only a very light sprinkling so far, and only tiny flakes.”
8.37pm: Latest snow radar map as snow creeps inland
The band of snow which wreaked havoc in Cornwall is creeping inland, as the map shows below.
Central London is expecting to start seeing snowflakes imminently.
Met Office warnings remain in place – you can read more about them HERE.
Latest snow radar map as snow creeps inland
7.56pm update: After the snow comes a beautiful sunset
Some in Cornwall have shared images of the snow storm as it moves away toward the west of England.
But plenty of drivers remain stuck on motorways as gritters try to access roads to make them safe enough for drivers to head home.
The M5 through Devon is at a complete standstill and the A30 is still jammed.
After the snow comes a beautiful sunset
Cornwall snow: Motorways remain jammed
7.40pm update: British Airways offering free changes ahead of potential flight disruptions
British Airways, operation out of London Heathrow, has offered passengers free changes on some of its short-haul flights in anticipation of the bad weather on Friday.
In a statement, the airline said: “We recognise the uncertainty that the bad weather may be causing customers, and have therefore introduced flexible rebooking options for all customers on short-haul flights flying to/from London Heathrow.
If you are due to travel on a short-haul service on Friday 1 February, regardless of whether your flight is currently showing as operating or not, you can rebook to travel up to and including Thursday 7 February.
We are sorry for the potential disruption to your travel plans and are doing all we can to minimise the effect the poor weather may have on our flights.
You should check the status of your flight before you travel.
7.07pm update: Roads to avoid this evening
Highways England advised road users to take extra care and avoid, if at all possible, the: A30, A38, A303, A417, M5.
More than 100 cars remain in a jam on the A30, and the M5 is also beginning to clog up.
Authorities are working to clear the blocked carriageways to allow gritters through and free up the roads.
UK weather: The current situation on the M5
6.40pm: How to help the homeless in the cold weather
If you see anyone sleeping rough in these conditions in England or Wales, you can report it to Streetlink HERE.
The details you provide will be sent to the local authority or outreach service for the area to help them find the individual and connect them to support.
You can go and sign up now, so next time you see someone it’s just a click away.
6.13pm update: TfL urges everyone to complete all journeys by 9pm
Transport for London has tweeted: “IMPORTANT TRAVEL INFO: Due to weather warning of ice, sleet, snow and windy conditions, please try to complete all journeys by 21:00 tonight.”
You can use the handy TfL TravelBot to check your bus or train before you travel.
5.52pm update: Travel chaos deepens
Dramatic images coming out of Cornwall show just how treacherous the roads are this evening as snow thickens.
The A30 is still at a standstill, and drivers are taking to social media to ask for tea and snacks to keep warm!
Dorset County Council has meanwhile tweeted that transport services including school buses had been cancelled on Friday due to the forecast.
Network Rail Western advised customers to travel before 9pm on Thursday and to check services with their train provider or Network Rail.
Dramatic images coming out of Cornwall show just how treacherous the roads are this evening
5.30pm update: Head to Paddington NOW
GWR is urging passengers to travel as soon as possible as disruptions begin to strike.
Some train services between Truro and Falmouth Docks have already been cancelled due to a low-speed derailment at Penryn.
5.20pm update: GWR trains lift ticket restrictions
Great Western Railway has lifted ticket time restrictions and are advising passengers to travel on an earlier service to avoid disruption.
5pm update: ‘Very difficult’ driving conditions and train delays expected
Drivers in the soutwest have been warned to take extra care as “very difficult” conditions are expected due to heavy snow.
Drivers have been told to avoid a number of routes in South Wales and southwest England, where up to 10cm of snow is possible, according to the Met Office.
Highways England said motorists should stay away from these areas from at least 2pm to 9pm: A30, A38, A303, A417 and M5.
Network Rail Western advised customers to travel before 9pm on Thursday and to check services with their train provider or Network Rail.
‘Very difficult’ driving conditions are expected
4.45pm update: Met Office weather warnings roundup
The Met Office has issued three weather warnings for Thursday and Friday.
The agency cautions of travel delays, power cuts, slippery surfaces and black ice.
1: AMBER WARNING – SNOW
Time: Between 2pm Thursday and 9pm Thursday
Regions affected: London & South East England; South West England; Wales
2: YELLOW WARNING – SNOW AND ICE
Time: Between 1pm Thursday and 1pm Friday
Regions affected: East Midlands; East of England; London & South East England; South West England; Wales; West Midlands
3: YELLOW WARNING – SNOW AND ICE
Time: Between 6pm Thursday and 12pm Friday
Regions affected: Central, Tayside & Fife; East Midland;s East of England; Grampian; Highlands & Eilean Siar; North East England; Orkney & Shetland; SW Scotland, Lothian Borders; Yorkshire & Humber
UK weather warnings: The Met Office warnings mapped
4.33pm update: Cornwall airport shut
Cornwall Airport, which is near Newquay, is currently closed due to snow.
The airport is hoping to reopen by 5pm, according to an update posted on Twitter.
4.16pm update: Workers told to head home early in southern England
Severe conditions could cause roads to deteriorate quickly as some roads pile up with snow and others turn frosty.
In Devon, the county council has urged people to get home as soon as possible and stay put.
Keep checking local weather forecasts before you venture out again.
3.42pm: Snow arrives in Cornwall – travel at a standstill
The snowy conditions have well and truly arrived in Cornwall now, as the wall of snow begins to blanket the South of England.
Traffic on the A30 motorway is said to be barely moving at Camborne.
Traffic monitoring website Inrix says: “Hazardous driving conditions and stationary traffic due to snow on A30 in both directions between A3047 (Camborne West, Camborne) and A39 (Indian Queens, Fraddon).
“Traffic is almost stationary due to heavy snowfall. There are reports of several vehicles now stranded in the snow around both Chiverton Cross and Highgate Hill.”
Cornwall snow: People are tweeting from their cars
3.18pm update: Newport City Council warns mourners: funerals might be CANCELLED
Newport City Council has issued an alarming tweet, warning mourners to “check with funeral directors” in case of disruptions due to snow.
It said: “With heavy snow forecast city parks may be closed tomorrow. Officers will assess conditions and if suitable then parks will open. Cemeteries will open for funeral services. Mourners should check with funeral directors re: access and parking arrangements in case of snow. Thanks”
The council has warned residents to keep an eye on neighbours in the icy conditions, particularly “in the unlikely event of a gas emergency or power cut”.
UK snow: The snow falls in Wales
Kate Whitfield taking over live reporting from Georgina Laud
3.01pm update: Extreme conditions in Snowdonia – mountaineers urged to keep off
A dramatic appeal was made on Thursday for mountaineers to keep off the peaks of Snowdonia because conditions “are now extreme”.
Adam Daniel, the National Park’s head of wardens service said: “Although Snowdonia’s snow-covered mountains are very pretty to look at, conditions on the ground itself are extremely dangerous.
“We kindly ask those who are thinking about going out in these conditions to seriously consider if they are willing to put their own lives and others at risk.”
2.43pm update: Snowing heavily in Newquay
Reports of heavy snow in Cornwall as residents take to Twitter to show snow near them.
2.24pm update: Officials are urging travellers to pack an emergency kit in their cars
Police Scotland have tweeted urging those taking to the roads to make sure their vehicles are equipped in case of breakdown.
The force urged drivers to pack –
- De-icer or scraper
- First Aid Kit
- Battery jump leads
- Food and drink
- Warm clothes
- Fully charge phone before leaving
- Map for unplanned diversions
1.43pm update: What does an Amber Warning actually mean?
This is an Amber Warning definition according to the Met Office.
Amber Warning: There is an increased likelihood of impacts from severe weather, which could potentially disrupt your plans.
This means there is the possibility of travel delays, road and rail closures, power cuts and the potential risk to life and property.
You should think about changing your plans and taking action to protect yourself and your property.
You may want to consider the impact of the weather on your family and your community and whether there is anything you need to do ahead of the severe weather to minimise the impact.
UK SNOW LIVE: Snow is falling heavily in Cornwall
MET OFFICE WARNING: Snow will spread across the south of the UK this afternoon
1.16pm update: Councils are reassuring residents they are prepared for heavy snow
Cornwall Council is reassuring local residents it is ready and prepared to tackle whatever the weather has to throw at it this evening.
The local authority tweeted: “We’re ready to deal with any problems the cold blast may bring.
“Our Emergency Management team’s monitoring the weather & gritters will be out if there’s a risk of ice or snow.
“Those guys do a fantastic job keeping the roads clear.”
12.42pm update: Roads preparing for wintry onslaught
Gritters have been out on the roads, with snowploughs, vehicles and more than 60 staff on standby in Somerset.
Highways England, which urged motorists to “take care when driving”, said key routes affected include the A30, the A38 and the M5.
Wiltshire Police said the Met Office had “told us to expect rain turning to snow, especially on hills, turning into icy conditions”.
The force added: “We know from last year how disruptive snow fall and icy conditions can be, especially on our road networks.
“So in true British fashion we are hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst.”
12.24pm update: Schools in Pembrokeshire will be closed early due to the impending snow and ice
Pembrokeshire County Council said four schools would be closing early due to the “forecast for snow and icy road conditions”.
Ysgol y Preseli will close at 12pm, Ysgol Caer Elen and Tavernspite at 1pm and Portfield Special School in Haverfordwest at 12.30pm.
School transport has been arranged for those closures and mobilised for a further 11 schools in the area.
UK Snow live: Wall of snow heading toward the UK this afternoon
12.12pm update: ‘London won’t know what’s hit it’
BBC 5Live Breakfast host Rachel Burden revealed meteorologist Simon King has forewarned London “won’t know what’s hit it” as the Capital wakes up on Friday.
Discussing her conversation with the forecaster, Ms Burden said: “Simon has already mentioned there is more snow on the way and in fact, he said to me this morning, before we came in ‘London is not going to know what’s hit it,’ tomorrow morning.
“There’s going to be lots of snow tonight all across the south of the UK, South Wales and southwest of England. Southeast of England as well. That’s on its way overnight tonight into tomorrow morning.”
11.57am update: Tonight’s commuters warned to expect disruption
BBC Weather presenter Simon King said: “We’re looking at over the next 12-24 hours some significant disruption actually, because of snow that’s going to move it’s way in.
“Every nation across the UK had the lowest temperature overnight so far this winter.
“But it’s the snow that we have to draw our attention to over the next 24 hours, snow and ice are a big feature in the forecast so disruption is likely.”
11.37am update: Snow is fast approaching, the Met Office warns those in the south
The Met Office has tweeted advising those thinking of heading out to grab lunch to do so quickly.
The weather service warned: “Lot’s going on weather-wise this lunchtime across the UK, but one thing we all have in common – feeling #cold.
There’s some #snow on the way for parts of the southwest, so head out quickly if you need to pick up a bite to eat.”
11.21am update: Met Office yellow snow warnings altered to reduce the northern extent of where disruptive snow is expected
The first warning lasts between 1.00pm Thursday 31 and 1.00pm Friday 1 February and is for East Midlands, East of England, London & South East England, South West England, Wales and West Midlands.
The second begins at 6.00pm Thursday 31 and lasts until 2.00pm Friday, February 1.
This affects Central, Tayside & Fife, East Midlands, East of England, Grampian, Highlands & Eilean Siar, North East England, Orkney & Shetland, SW Scotland, Lothian Borders and Yorkshire & Humber.
Weather warning: Met Office has issued an amber alert for snow
10.44am update: Met Office issue Amber weather warning for snow
The Met Office has issued an Amber Warning for snow for London & South East England, South West England and Wales.
Heavy snow likely on Thursday afternoon and evening, between Thursday 2.00pm and Thursday 9.00pm.
What to expect –
- Travel delays on roads are likely, stranding some vehicles and passengers
- Some delays and cancellations to rail travel are likely
- There is a good chance that some rural communities could become cut off
- Power cuts are likely and other services, such as mobile phone coverage, may be affected
UK Snow live: Snow accumulations could reach up to 10cm say the Met Office
10.35am update: Southeastern Rail will be running a winter timetable in response to weather
Friday will see Southeastern Rail switch to their winter timetable to cope with the oncoming snow.
In a tweet the rail company said: “The Winter Weather timetable will be in place tomorrow (Friday) due to bad weather.
“Train times will be different and peak services will be busier so travel earlier / later if you can.”
Check train times for this changed timetable on their website, here.
9.42am update: Snow warnings due to come into effect today
Snow and Ice – Between 1.00pm Thursday 31 and 9.00pm Friday 1 February
This is for East Midlands, East of England, London & South East England, North West England, South West England, Wales, West Midlands and Yorkshire & Humber.
Snow accumulations are likely with 0.4-1.1 inches (1-3 cm) likely in places within the warning area and the potential for 2-4 inches (5-10 cm), perhaps particularly over Wales and southwest England
Snow and Ice – Between 6pm Thursday 31 and 12.00pm Friday February 1.
This affects Central, Tayside & Fife, Grampian, Highlands & Eilean Siar, North East England, Orkney & Shetland, SW Scotland, Lothian Borders and Yorkshire & Humber.
Snow accumulations of 0.4-1.1 inches (1-3 cm) are possible in places by Friday morning. Ice is likely to form on some untreated surfaces.
Weather maps LIVE: Snow will blanket Britain Thursday night – latest weather projections
UK Snow Live: Snow depth across the south could reach up to 11cm say WXCHARTS
9.25am update: Coldest night of winter so far for the whole UK
Across the country, temperatures plunged to create the coldest night of winter so far for the whole UK.
Loch Glascarnoch reached -12.8C
Braemar reached —12.9C
Katesbridge reached -8.2C
Redesdale Camp reached -10.5C
Shap reached -10.0C
Scampton reached -7.5C
Santon Downham reached -8.2C
Benson reached -8.9C
Charlwood reached -7.9C
Exeter reached -5.9C
Bala reached -8C
Spennybridge reached -9.3