The French weather forecaster Météo France recorded temperatures of -9C on Sunday night, the coldest April night on record since 1947.

Overnight frosts were seen across almost all of the France, with the exception of the Paris area and the northern and Mediterranean coasts, with the coldest temperatures recorded in the Champagne area.

While Champagne went down to -9C parts of the south west also recorded temperatures of -5C, leaving wine producers very worried about frost damage to their vines.

Also affected are farmers and fruit growers.

The president of France's largest agricultural union FNSEA told Le Parisien that the frost had "hit hard" during the night and would have "very serious" consequences.

"It's very serious, it hit hard overnight, as Météo France had predicted, the temperature went down to -5C, many arboriculturists are affected, what suffered are above all the stone fruits", said Christiane Lambert. "There are many affected regions such as Dordogne, Burgundy, Alsace, Centre-Val de Loire, Lot-et-Garonne, Maine-et-Loire."

Many vineyard owners have put candles or lamps out in their fields in an attempt to prevent the vines from freezing, as forecasters predict another two nights of low temperatures and morning frosts.

France's grape harvest was badly hit by late frosts in 2021, leading to a much reduced wine production, although vineyard owners say it is too early to assess the scale of the damage this year.