Ten centimetres of snow predicted for Friday

WINTER has truly arrived in the county with freezing temperatures and a predicted snowfall of 10cms in the next few days.

WINTER has truly arrived in the county with freezing temperatures and a predicted snowfall of 10cms in the next few days.

The cold snap began last night with temperatures plunging to -4C in Wattisham and gritters out in force across the county from 4am.

Schoolchildren were preparing to celebrate the start of the Christmas holidays by building snowmen on Friday - the day when 10cms is predicted to fall with much of the bad weather coming from the freezing depths of Siberia.

However, it was scarves and gloves at the ready before that as snowy showers are likely for the rest of the week and temperatures will struggle to reach more than 3C.

Last night was the coldest night of the winter so far with drivers needing extra time this morning to scrape the ice from their vehicles.

Suffolk's fleet of 38 gritters were out in force spreading salt on all A and B roads, bus and school routes and roads into villages with the last trucks sent out at 4am.

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Emma Sharples, forecaster for Weatherquest, said this morning: “The temperature in Wattisham dropped to minus four overnight, there could be isolated spots where it was even a bit lower.

“It's going to be a chilly day, only two or three degrees with sleety rain going through this morning so it will be a bit miserable.

“Tonight won't be as chilly, maybe one degree above freezing, but we will continue to see further wintery weather over the next couple of days with more snow showers tomorrow and we don't really get away from that through into the weekend, although Saturday may have a bit more brightness.”

By 7am today emergency services reported no major accidents or incidents connected to the freezing weather overnight.

Despite the bitterly cold week ahead, forecasters said it was still too early to predict whether Suffolk would enjoy its first white Christmas since 1970.