New Year’s Eve may be the hottest ever as hot air from the Azores will sweep across Britain, the Met Office says.
The southwest may see the mildest temperatures this weekend with forecasters predicting an eerie end to 2021, the Mirror reports.
While temperatures are expected to remain in double digits this coming weekend, mercury will soon fall and more snow is on the way.
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The warm south-westerly winds from the Azores have arrived in the UK and are replacing the cooler north winds that are typical of this time of year.
A continued period of milder weather means the record for the highest temperature on New Year’s Eve in the UK – 14.8 degrees C at Colwyn Bay in northern Wales in 2011 – could be broken.
The temperature is expected to remain relatively high until the end of the week before falling to around 6 degrees C in Scotland and the north of England and around 9 degrees C in the south of England from Bank Holiday morning.
Met Office forecast chief Craig Snell said the milder temperatures were “all to do with wind direction”.
He said: “Earlier this month we had some cold northern winds, but from today the winds are coming in from the southwest, you can trace the air back to the Azores and the Central Atlantic.
“It’s still pretty hot there at this time of year, so we’ll tap into the milder air being towed up to the UK.
“That means it’s very mild for the season, especially in the south west of the UK.”
Temperatures are expected to hit 16 degrees along the south coast today, but still well below the December record of 18.7 degrees in 2019.
Snell said: “I think people will continue to feel how mild it is over the next few days.
“We are keeping a close eye on the New Year’s Eve weather, because that record (14.8C) is quite threatened.
“But it looks like the transition (to cooler weather) will be on holiday morning.”
The Met Office says winter showers are expected across Scotland from Monday 3 January, but adds: “Later Monday it is expected to get colder with an increased likelihood of winter showers at lower levels.”
Weather charts from the WX Charts reveal that snow may move south from January 10, with wintry showers currently forecast in West Wales, North West and London.
What does Met Office say?
Long-term view from 3.-12. January
Showers and rain are expected to move across the country, from west to east, during the day Monday. Some possibly wintry across Scotland. It will be windy for anyone with hard to gale force winds in coastal areas. Later Monday, it is expected to get colder with increased likelihood of winter showers at lower levels. Colder conditions with winter outbreaks are expected to continue through the first half of the week. In addition to the midweek period, changing conditions with westerly winds are likely to spread across the UK. Rainy periods will be accompanied by milder conditions; these are likely to be interrupted by showers and denser average temperatures. During this time, the most turbulent conditions will most likely be to the northwest, and most definitely to the southeast.
Long-term outlook for 13-27. January
Unstable conditions are most likely through much of the period with periods of rain interrupted by dry but still rainy interludes. Strong winds probably at times. Early in this period there is a risk of a period of cold weather, which gives a greater chance of snow, especially to the northern areas. However, temperatures close to or above average are the most likely results. At the end of the period, there is a greater chance that some more fixed periods will develop, especially across the south. This will increase the likelihood of night frost and fog.
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