Page last updated at 14:47 GMT, Wednesday, 12 May 2010 15:47 UK

Weather forecasters record coldest May night since 1996


Sleet and snow fell on high ground in northern England

The coldest May night since 1996 was felt in many parts of the UK on Tuesday, some of which have seen snowfall, said BBC forecasters.

The night time UK average is normally 4-7C at this time of the year.

But -6C was recorded in the Highlands of Scotland, -3.1C in Oxfordshire, -4.3C in Wales, -5.3C in Cumbria -3.9C in East Anglia and 0C in London.

Forecasters said it was unusually late to see frosts, but that there would be more freezing weather tonight for some.

On Tuesday daytime temperatures, normally expected to reach 16C at this time of year, peaked at just 13C.

Pic of snow in Elton, Peak District. Pic sent by John Wright
There was snow in the Peak District on Wednesday morning. Pic: John Wright

Snow fell mostly on high ground, but it was cold enough to snow in other areas during Tuesday, such as Newcastle.

Reader John Wright told the BBC it had "snowed hard" for about 50 minutes in the Peak District village of Elton on Wednesday morning, leaving a light covering.

BBC forecaster Philip Avery said there would be another "widespread frost" tonight, with some temperatures as low as Tuesday night, dropping to -3C or -4C in some rural areas and zero in London.

He said an area of cold, coming from the direction of Iceland, was hanging over north-western Europe but would be moving away from Thursday.

Milder air is then set to move in from the Atlantic.

"Tonight should be the last of the particularly cold nights. Thursday and Friday should be several degrees higher. As a trend into next week the temperatures for some parts could be really quite warm," he added.

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