The trees are starting to blossom, the lambing season has begun, and we've enjoyed plenty of spring-like sunshine earlier this week. Just as we thought we had turned our backs on this miserable winter - the UK's wettest on record - a warning of snow has hit the headlines this morning.
With just two days left before the start of spring on Saturday, this winter has been remarkable not just for its rainfall but also its mild temperatures. In the Anglia region it's likely to be the third mildest on record with temperatures around 2°C above average. Apart from a brief spell of sleet in January and occasional hail showers, we've not seen anything white fall from the sky.
So will we finally see snow in the Anglia region on the last day of winter? The short answer is: it's complicated. For most of us, tomorrow, all we can expect is cold rain. For some, particularly in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Milton Keynes, Northamptonshire and parts of Cambridgeshire, there is the risk of a wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow later in the day.
Yesterday the Met Office issued a yellow warning for the risk of snow across much of the south of Britain. Today there is greater confidence that the main snow risk will be over the hills of Wales and Western England and the yellow warning has been trimmed so it no longer covers part of the Anglia region. However, there remains higher than normal uncertainty. According to the Met Office Chief Forecaster:
– Met Office Chief Forecaster
An area of low pressure is expected to move eastwards on Friday. There remains some uncertainty in its track and therefore on the risk and location of any snow.
As that low pressure arrives, it is likely to bring a cold and occasionally wet day to all parts of the Anglia region. Don't be surprised though, especially if you live in the west of the region or over higher ground, to see rain in the morning followed by sleet or snow later in the afternoon. If you've waited all winter to build a snowman or get on your sledge, you may be disappointed. Any snow that does fall from the sky is unlikely to settle and won't last long before the sunshine and rain showers return at the weekend.