snow buries car Derbyshire

After extreme weather, a car is almost hidden by several feet of snow near Castleton in the Derbyshire Peak District yesterday afternoon
It's bad news for anyone who didn't pick up a coat in the January sales - last month's icy spell is expected to continue all week.

The mercury was expected to fall to -11C in some parts of the UK overnight, with subzero temperatures expected every night this week and snow predicted across swathes of the nation.

Southern England is gearing up for its coldest snap of the winter, with forecasters saying it will fall to -4C in the South tonight - as cold as your fridge.

Simon Partidge of the Met Office said: 'The maximum temperature on Monday will only be around 4C or 5C which is about the same as inside your fridge.

'And there is a further band of rain, sleet and snow coming in on Monday night which will see some snow in Western parts on Tuesday. It will be dry with sunny spells from Wednesday, but still very cold with some snow on the East Coast.

snow teesdale county durham

A farmer used his tractor as a plough as he desperately tries to gain access to his field in Teesdale, County Durham
Speaking yesterday, Mr Partridge added: 'Tonight will be the coldest night of the current cold spell. In the South of the UK, in places like Exeter, we could see temperatures as low as -5C, and in London it will be more like -2C.

'In central Scotland it will be even colder, at around -7C, while the Scottish Highlands will experience around -11C tonight.

'There is likely to be snow in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the east of England tonight - and as the northerly wind eases, a lot of frost will be settled on the ground tomorrow across the UK.

'Daytime temperatures tomorrow will be close to 3C on average across the UK. It's usually around 4C or 5C inside your fridge. In higher regions like the Peak District it is unlikely to get above freezing.

'The rest of the week is looking much drier, though the cold weather will continue.'

The coldest temperature recorded so far this winter was -12.5C in Scotland on January 18.

Helen Rossington, forecaster at MeteoGroup, said: 'The cold spell won't end for a while yet - until late next week at least. The cold air was brought in by northerly winds last week and a high pressure system means it has stayed with us.'

The bone-chilling temperatures follow the sunniest January in more than ten years.
icicles derbyshire

Icicles hang from a hedgerow by the side of a road in Derbyshire yesterday where overnight temperatures were expected to fall well below freezing
Meanwhile, the extreme conditions are believed to have contributed to the death of a climber killed in an avalanche in the Scottish Highlands on Friday.

Mountain rescue teams and the Stornoway coastguard helicopter searched for the man, who was with one other climber, on Friday night but were forced to call it off because the weather was so bad.

The search resumed on Saturday afternoon and one of the climbers was found walking out to find help - but tragically when rescue teams reached his companion he was already dead.

Heavy snow and strong winds, persistent in the Highlands over the last month, are believed to have played a part in the avalanche.

A force spokesman said: 'On the Friday night police were alerted to two overdue climbers who had undertaken climbs on Coireag Dubh Mor in the Torridon area of the western Highlands.

'Torridon Mountain Rescue Team were alerted and air assistance was provided by Stornoway coastguard helicopter.

'Poor weather conditions made for difficult search conditions.

'The search continued during Saturday. One of the climbers was traced in the early afternoon, walking out to summon assistance for his companion. Both had been avalanched.

'His companion was subsequently traced, but did not survive. A report is being submitted to the procurator fiscal.'

Both men - from Suffolk - were experienced climbers with the proper equipment, police said.

In 2012, the last full year for which figures are available, rescue teams helped 720 people with 240 injured and 25 fatalities in Scotland's mountains.

Advice was issued earlier this year to walkers, climbers and skiers.

Mark Diggins, from the Sportscotland Avalanche Information Service, said: 'Many thousands of enthusiasts enjoy the Scottish mountains every winter.

'However, the fast-changing weather, with its snowfall, avalanche hazard, strong winds and poor visibility, requires us to be much more prepared when going into the mountains in the winter.

'Good clothing, navigational ability, appropriate equipment, movement skills on steep terrain and use of ice axe and crampons are a necessary requirement for our enjoyment and safety.'
cyclists derbyshire

A group of cyclists carry their mountain bikes around the edge of Mam Tor overlooking the Edale valley in the Derbyshire Peak District
Extreme conditions plagued the whole of the UK last week with a rare 'thundersnow' storm causing icy roads and leading to widespread travel disruption.

Also predicting more severe conditions, George Goodfellow, a forecaster at MeteoGroup, added: 'Temperatures are looking widely low single figures, with really strong northwesterly winds making wind chill a factor. There will be some quite cold nights with sub-zero temperatures.

'We are expecting a lot of places could be dry but there may be some showers on the east coast and the north, which could get icy.'

Met Office amber warnings are in place across much of northern England with more snow and cold weather predicted until Thursday and gusts of up to 60 and 70mph in some places. Heavy snow was expected to settle in highland areas of northern Scotland by as much as 25cm (10in).

The alert read: 'Colder conditions will arrive from the north during this coming weekend. The cold accentuated by strong winds at times. Snow showers will affect a number of areas through this period. More sheltered southern areas of England will see fewer showers.

'Overnight frosts will give icy stretches on untreated surfaces, with the possibility of widespread ice. Less cold conditions might develop later next week.'

It warned the public to take care on the roads during the period.

In Derbyshire, a number of roads, including sections of the A57 and A53, have been forced to close as a result of dangerous conditions.

The county has seen heavy snowfall in the last week and dozens of schools were forced to close.

In Warwickshire on Friday, tons of earth loosened by the snow, ice and rain slid down on to the track between Leamington Spa and Banbury.

This morning, trains were still not able to get through and passengers were being offered a 'limited bus service between the stations.'

Rail workers are battling to clear the landslip so services can resume before tomorrow morning's rush hour.

Despite the recent blast of cold weather, MeteoGroup said January sunshine in England and Wales averaged 75 hours, making it the sunniest since 2003, with only three Januarys in the last 100 years seeing more rays.