BRITAIN will continue to be buffeted by gale force winds for the remainder of the week, with colder air bringing the possibility of heavy snow by the weekend.
A powerful jet stream is set to cause more severe weather, bringing strong winds and torrential rain in its wake. Although it will be mild in the south, colder air will spread across the north during the week, turning rain to snow over the hills. The Met Office has issued a Yellow ice warning for parts of Scotland on Wednesday, which will lead to treacherous driving conditions for motorists.
By the weekend temperatures will have dropped all over the country, with the north in particular likely to see a mix of rain, sleet and snow.
Wednesday starts off chilly, but most areas will experience bright and dry conditions.
The exception to the rule is the west of the country, where rain showers will persist throughout the day, falling as snow over northern hills.
The south coast is also likely to see some showers throughout Wednesday.
Voters will have to battle through strong winds and heavy rain as they make their way to the polls on Thursday.
Met Office forecaster Nicola Maxey said: “By polling day on Thursday we’ll also have to contend with freezing temperatures and heavy rain.
“The good news is that the rain is expected to move quickly eastwards throughout the day.
“But it’s highly likely that those heading out to cast their vote will get a pretty good soaking.”
Heading into the weekend, it will continue to be chilly and windy, with more snowfall expected on northern hills.
Last weekend saw the UK’s first major storm touch down, bringing with it gusts of wind up to 80 mph.
The winds helped Britain’s wind farms set a new renewable power record on Sunday evening, according to National Grid.
Wind farms generated 16 gigawatts of power over the course of Sunday.
This is five times the output expected from the new Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant.
The nuclear power station is being built by French energy company EDF in conjunction with the China General Nuclear Power Group.
The state-owned Chinese company is footing one third of the £20billion bill for the nuclear plant.
National Grid said that wind supplied almost 44% of electricity over Sunday as a whole.
The company paid its customers to use the extra electricity generated by the winds, because this was cheaper than paying turbine operators to shut down their equipment.
This led to the extraordinary situation where some electric car owners on Octopus Energy’s flexible pricing plan were paid to charge their vehicles.
They were also given the option of selling the surplus energy back to the National Grid by as much as 5p per unit of power.
Luke Clark from industry body RenewableUK said: “This new British clean energy record is a great early Christmas present, and shows just how important wind is in an energy system that’s changing rapidly.
“On a dark cold Sunday when we need it most, wind was providing more than 40% of our power, far more than any other source of electricity.”