Snow due to arrive in Northern England tomorrow

People woke up to snow in Scotland this morning as falls began which will bring a taste of winter to large areas of Britain over the next 48 hours.

Snow began in the north west of Scotland during the evening and moved to other areas north of the border during the night.

Laura Caldwell, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said: ''There have been accumulations of a few centimetres in parts of Scotland and the snow is expected to move into northern England and as far south as the Midlands during the day.''

More falls are expected in north Wales, central England and northern England tomorrow.

Most of the areas will see between 2cm and 5cm settle while some such as Yorkshire will see up to 10cm.

Cold weather will take hold of all the UK, but southern England and Wales is likely to be spared snow.

The Met Office has a level two weather warning in place until Tuesday covering the whole of England, alerting residents to ice, snow and bitter temperatures.

It said: ''This weather could increase the health risks to vulnerable patients and disrupt the delivery of services.''

Temperatures were low across the UK overnight, with the lowest reading minus 6C at Shap in Cumbria at 3am.

Ms Caldwell said: ''There were below zero readings in many parts of England and Wales, though in southern England it was a little milder, with readings of 2C and 3C, and even some 4s and 5s in the south west.''

The cold weather is expected to linger for the rest of the week with the possibility of more snow flurries in central and eastern England.

The AA has warned that 75 per cent of drivers are not prepared for conditions on the roads, and urged drivers to carry an essential winter kit and check their cars before getting behind the wheel.

The RAC is expecting up to 56,000 breakdowns and widespread disruption. It has placed extra patrols on stand-by to help stranded motorists and said call-outs are expected to rise by 20 per cent or more.

The Highways Agency has said it is ''well prepared'' for winter conditions.

A spokeswoman said: ''We have a fleet of 500 state-of-the-art winter vehicles on standby, supported by tried-and-tested winter resilience plans.

''We have reviewed salt stock levels and taken action where needed to enhance our resilience and we have again established a reserve salt stock to help ensure that there is enough salt to deal with severe winter.

''Our roads will be treated whenever there is a risk of ice or snow. However, even when roads have been treated, drivers should still take care, especially on stretches where the local road layout or landscape means there could be a greater risk of ice forming.''

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