Britain set for return of freezing weather over Easter

Walkers cross a snow-covered Clapham Common in London on March 18, 2018.
Walkers cross a snow-covered Clapham Common in London on March 18, 2018.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON - Weather forecasters expect white Easter for parts of Britain and Ireland with a return of freezing temperatures.

The UK Met Office, the government weather agency, said chances of snow are increasing for the Easter weekend and temperatures will be lower than an average March across the whole country.

"The most likely scenario currently is a spell of colder than average weather, with an increased likelihood of overnight frosts, and a greater than normal chance of snow, especially in the north," the Met Office said in its long-range forecast.

"Temperatures will be slightly below normal and locally rather cold, with a risk of overnight frosts, chiefly in the north.

The country has had repeated bouts of freezing conditions this winter, including an Arctic blast that swept down from Siberia dubbed "the Beast from the East". Another wintry blast brought snow and ice to parts of the country last weekend but temperatures have started to warm up before the next storm hits later next week.

Some British media have been calling the Easter freeze 'Beast from the East 3'.

"Easter on ice: Met Office UK weather forecast says 'greater chance' of snow and White Easter next week as 'Beast from the East 3' brings -9C deep freeze" read the headline on Wednesday on The Sun's website.

However, it is unlikely there will be a repeat of the transport chaos caused by Arctic conditions earlier this month, The Independent said.


Met Office spokeswoman Nicola Maxey said: "There is a great deal of uncertainty in the forecast for Easter weekend at the moment, but what we're looking at is temperatures slightly below average - about three or four degrees below average - and some rainfall coming through."

"We're not talking about anything like a fortnight ago or this weekend for southern areas," The Independent quoted Ms Maxey as saying.

"It will be a dusting over the mountains and more likely the further south you are the warmer it will be and the better weather you'll get."