Frosty conditions will bring a “seasonal feel” to the UK during the festive period, but those dreaming of a truly white Christmas will be disappointed, the Met Office has said.
Temperatures across most of the country will stay in mid-single figures on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but no snow is expected to settle.
The Met Office said that despite a wet start to the week, temperatures would start to drop, and hats, coats and scarves would be needed for any household winter walks.
Whilst there will be some wet and windy weather to start the week, there are signs more settled weather is on the way pic.twitter.com/FUOjga1xCi— Met Office (@metoffice) December 19, 2020
Tom Morgan, meteorologist at the Met Office, said the mercury could drop to minus 3C in parts of England and Wales on Christmas Eve morning.
Temperatures are expected to reach a high of 6C in London and the south of England on December 24 and a high of 5C on Christmas Day.
Parts of the north including Manchester face similarly low temperatures of 4C and 5C on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day respectively.
“It’s going to be dry for the vast majority of the UK, and it will be a cold and frosty start to the day, particularly for England and Wales,” said Mr Morgan.
“So there will be a seasonal feel in terms of white frost on the ground, but in terms of snow, we’re not anticipating any on the ground for the vast majority of the country, unfortunately.
“It’s going to be a frosty Christmas rather than a white Christmas.
“It’s a mild and wet start to the week in the south but turning much colder and sunnier for the Christmas period and I think everyone will notice that.
“Even though it’s not going to be a white Christmas, people will still need their big coats and scarves and hats etcetera for any walks they may be going on over the Christmas period.”
Mr Morgan said there may be a light covering of snow in some eastern parts of Scotland on Christmas Eve, but none is currently expected on Christmas Day.
He added that temperatures at the start of the week would be “milder than average” (around 13-14C) for the time of year, which is usually 8C or 9C.
The Met Office said that flood watches were in place for southern parts of England and Wales following recent bouts of wet weather, and rainfall warnings may be necessary for the beginning of the week.
Update: the Eden Project will be closed on Sunday 20 December and Monday 21 December, due to significant flooding. We are reviewing the situation, and will post updates here and on Edenâs website. Ticketholders for these dates will be automatically refunded.— Eden Project (@edenproject) December 20, 2020
It comes as the Eden Project botanical gardens in Cornwall was closed on Sunday due to “significant flooding” on the site overnight.
A spokesman for the Eden Project said high volumes of rainwater caused several landslips on the site but there had been no injuries to staff.
“Managers closed the site as a safety precaution and are assessing the damage,” they said, adding that the site would be closed to visitors again on Monday when a further assessment would be carried out.