As last month was declared the sunniest January since 2003, the UK is expected to receive  particularly cold weather this week.

Although the weather will be drier for this first week of February, winds and snow showers will make the weather feel colder. Freezing snow blizzards of up to 70 mph are expected.

The temperatures are expected to drop to between -10°C and -12°C at the end of the week for the coldest areas, due to a smothering "arctic airmass". Heavy and persistent snow could fall in some places.

After last week’s extreme weather conditions, icy conditions and below freezing temperatures are awaited in the Midlands, Yorkshire and the North of England. A cold weather alert has been issued in most parts of England. The icy blast could cause this period to be the coldest of the winter so far.

As always in such weather conditions, drivers are asked to be extra careful on the road.