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It’s snow joke, everyone: up to eight inches of the white stuff is set to fall in the UK today

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Ah, snow; it always looks so picturesque in the movies, gently dusted over trees, glistening like diamonds in the sunlight, and adorned with red-breasted robins. But, as always, the reality is usually very different.

Think travel chaos, soggy shoes, and freezing cold temperatures, to name but three.

Which is why we were less than pleased to learn that the Met Office has said up to eight inches of snow can fall today (12 January), with much of the country under a severe weather warning.

Throw in the gale-force 75mph winds, “blizzard-like conditions”, and heavy rain, and you have a plethora of problems heading to roads and rail networks across the UK.

So where exactly is this so-called thundersnow going to hit?


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Paul Gundersen, chief meteorologist at the Met Office, explained to The Independent that the heaviest and most frequent snow showers are likely across northern and western Scotland, Northern Ireland and around Irish Sea coasts, but eastern coasts will also be affected in the coming days.

“Most northern areas are very likely to see snow showers at times over the next few days, but the situation over the southern half of England is more complicated," Gundersen said.

He went on to explain that, unlike previous snow warnings before, this won’t just affect the north of the country; southern counties – and even our fair capital – could also be hit by snow before the day is out.

“Southern counties of England and Wales can expect a cold and wet day with some heavy rain on Thursday, but there's an increasing chance this will turn to sleet or snow, especially over hills, during the afternoon and evening,” said Gundersen.

“There is a chance of snow settling bringing disruption to transport during the evening rush hour and possibly interruptions to power supplies, this more likely across East Anglia and south-east England. As skies clear on Thursday night it is likely to become icy in many areas.

“Forecasting snow is always challenging and there's often a fine line between whether it will rain or snow in a particular location depending on slight changes in air temperature. Keep an eye on the forecast and warnings for your area for the latest information.”


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Snow or not, it’s going to be very cold; daytime temperatures are likely to be around 2 to 5C, but the strong to gale force winds will make it feel much colder. And, in snow-covered rural parts, temperatures could dip to below -10C.

The cold weather is expected to last through until at least Friday, although snow shows will become more isolated over time.

Public Health England have, as a result, warned citizens to “prepare” for the bad weather by keeping their homes heated to at least 18C, wearing lots of thin layers instead of fewer thicker ones, and to ensure your shoes have a good grip on them.

They also advise picking up any vital medicine or food you may need before the snow arrives – and have reminded us to look in on those aged over 65, as the elderly are at the greatest risk during wintry weather conditions.


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Meanwhile the Energy Networks Association has reminded people they can call 105 - the new, free national phone line - if the weather damages their local power network and affects their electricity supply.

And the RAC has asked drivers to prepare for “tricky” conditions and “significantly extended journey times”.

All in all, it sounds like the cold probably will bother us. A lot.

We guess we can’t all be like Frozen’s Elsa.

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