BALTIC BRRR-ITAIN UK weather: Met Office warns MORE snow to hit huge swathes of Britain sparking travel chaos and school closures

THE Met Office has warned more snow is due to hit large areas of the UK as the white stuff causes travel chaos and school closures.

High ground in north-west Scotland could see the worst conditions with the forecaster predicting more than 40cm of snow could fall by the end of Friday as it continues to build up over the coming days.

A postie battles the elements to complete their round in Austwick, Yorkshire, earlier today

The Met Office has recorded 15cm of snow has fallen at Aberdeen Airport

Drivers have a tough time on the snow covered roads in Keswick in Cumbria

Kayakers head out on Derwentwater, Keswick, in a heavy snow blizzard

A driver tentatively makes their way along the road near Aberdeen

People at Camp Hill in Woolton, Liverpool, made the most of the snow to go sledging

A bus makes its way along the A62 at Marsden Moor between Oldham and Huddersfield

Enough snow fell in Sefton Park, Liverpool, for someone to build a snowman today

An ice crystal rainbow could be seen over The Roaches near Leek in the Staffordshire Peak District

The Met Office said that Caithness and Sutherland, in north-west Scotland, were likely to suffer the worst of the snow.

Much of Britain will face snow and freezing temperatures for most of this week due to cold Arctic air with wet and windy weather sweeping over the weekend.

Around 200 schools across Merseyside, Aberdeenshire, Moray and Shetland were closed due to snow on Monday - read a full list of school closures here.

More than 120 schools in Scotland are closed.

There are 22 school closures in Aberdeenshire on Tuesday while almost all others in the area either opened late, faced transport issues or are partially closed.

In the Highlands, 75 schools are closed and others are partially closed or had delayed openings. Twenty-six schools in Shetland are closed.

Altnaharra, a village in the Highlands, saw the most amount of snow today, with 16 cm while Wick in the far north of Scotland had 14cm and Aberdeen Airport had 12cm.

Drivers faced difficult conditions thanks to the wintry weather across north-west England, including in Merseyside, Cheshire and Cumbria.

Lancashire Police said there was 'an influx in road traffic collisions' in the county, while Merseyside Police dealt with 'a number of incidents' on the roads due to snow.

Yellow weather warnings for snow and ice are in place across Scotland, much of northern England and parts of North Wales until Thursday, then more mild temperatures are forecast along with wind and rain.

A "cold plunge of Arctic air" has moved south across the whole country over the past few days, making it 5C to 6C lower than usual for this time of year, the Met Office said.

Forecasters predict temperatures could plunge as low as minus 15C in places on Tuesday night.

More than 40cm of snow could be seen on high ground in north-west Scotland by the end of Friday as it continues to build up over the coming days, the Met Office added.

Meanwhile, lower ground in north-west Scotland could see between five and 10cm of snow by the end of the working week.

And while unlikely, there is a chance of a few centimetres of snow falling on the extreme south of England this week.

The Met Office is reviewing the situation and any new warnings could be issued at short notice, it said.

The weekend will be milder, but westerly weather will bring wind and rain - and the potential for more weather warnings as the snow melts.

Stephen Dixon, spokesman for the Met Office, said: "We've seen a fair bit of snow already and more is expected in coastal areas, the north of Scotland, north-west England and south-west Scotland.

"It will be a continuing theme through much of this week."

He added: "Towards the weekend it's looking like we will return to a more western influence, so wet and windy as you get to Friday and it will bring temperatures up slightly.

"As you get towards Saturday you could see maximum temperatures of 11C in the south west of England which is much milder than what we've seen as of late.

"By Sunday we would see quite a deep area of low pressure moving in which will bring strong winds and heavy rain.

"The additional hazards will be snow melting and rainfall on Sunday."

The Government has confirmed thousands of households in England and Wales are eligible for cold weather payments.

They are made to vulnerable people, including pensioners, to help them pay for heating when the temperature dips below freezing.

The payments go to those living in an area where the average temperature is recorded as, or forecast to be, 0C or below over seven consecutive days.

Payments will be made to homes across Cumbria, Oxfordshire, Yorkshire, Northumberland, Norfolk, Staffordshire and Powys in Wales.

The UK Health Security Agency has issued a cold-health alert, which warns of possible impacts for the health and social care sector, while National Highways has put in place a severe weather alert for snow affecting north-west England on Tuesday, with road users advised to plan ahead and some rural communities warned they could be temporarily cut off.

Amy Fellows, national network manager at National Highways, said: "Freezing conditions bring so many hazards such as snow and ice, so take every possible step to understand your journey in advance and allow lots of extra time when travelling, to prepare for the unexpected."

National Rail has warned the wintry weather could affect train journeys all week, with ScotRail saying services on the Highland Mainline route on Tuesday would be delayed by around 30 minutes.

Met Office chief meteorologist Andy Page said: "There will be widespread frost this week and we could see some fairly deep laying snow in parts of northern UK and strong winds could result in drifting or blizzard conditions at times.

"The snow and ice will be disruptive and could potentially impact travel plans, make driving dangerous and pavements slippery."

Rooftops in Northwich, Cheshire, were covered in snow this morning

A cute pooch is wrapped up warm for walkies in Bowness on Windermere, in the Lake District

A man tries to clear the path in Bowness on Windermere in the Lake District this morning

The Leeds & Liverpool canal in Skipton was frozen this morning in Yorkshire

The Met Office has a yellow weather warning out for today

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