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Snow and sleet are forecast for parts of the UK Credit: PA Wire

Snow and sleet to come after gales batter UK

Snow and sleet are expected in parts of the UK after the country was battered by rain and heavy winds. Weather alerts warning of snow, ice and rain are in place for Scotland, North East and North West England, Yorkshire, the East Midlands and Northern Ireland. Engineers are working to reconnect thousands of homes in Scotland after high winds left them without power. At the height of the problems more than 100,000 properties across the Highlands, islands, Aberdeenshire and the central belt of Scotland lost electricity as hurricane-force winds brought gusts of more than 100mph. Wintry showers in the north and parts of the west are forecast to turn to snow, especially over hills in central Britain. The high winds and wintry showers are expected to remain into early next week. Met Office forecaster Simon Partridge said: “Another low pressure system is just tracking to North West Scotland bringing winds across the area of 50-60mph and causing gusts of up to 80mph. “And off the back of that there are areas that are still trying to restore power. Conditions for climbing up poles are not ideal when you have 60mph winds. And it will be generally windy across the UK.” But despite the powerful winds, temperatures have remained unseasonably balmy hitting 16C (61F) in Exeter. Mr Partridge said the warm temperatures are “not quite record breaking but they are very rare”. But the mercury is set to plunge today as sleet and snow hit large swathes of Britain. Met Office forecaster Alex Burkill said: “As we go through Saturday morning a band of squally rain will move south eastwards and that’s going to bring brighter but much colder conditions behind it. “Some showers are likely to be heavy and may well fall as sleet or snow, particularly in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the north of England and some of the showers could bring significant accumulations, particularly over higher ground. “We could widely see 2cm to 4cm (up to 1.5ins) of snow, and perhaps 8cm (just over 3ins) on the highest ground. “That could cause major disruption to travel so there are yellow warnings in place for affected areas. “As it moves south it will leave colder conditions so after a mild night temperatures will really tumble to 4 or 5C (39.2F-41F).”

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