Weather: Chilly temperatures linger after snowy weekend

Freya Barnes, 7, enjoys the late March snow on Stonelodge Park, Ipswich

Freya Barnes, 7, enjoys the late March snow on Stonelodge Park, Ipswich

BITINGLY cold temperatures are here to stay for at least the coming week, say weather experts.

Our region escaped the worst of the UK’s snowfall this weekend but reports range from one to three inches across Suffolk and north Essex.

According to forecasters the snow will ease, but temperatures are likely to remain unseasonably chilly for the time of year - falling to about -2 or -3C (26-28F) tonight.

The outlook is remarkably inconsistent with this time last year, when spring sunshine beamed down on the county, bringing blue skies and above average temperatures reaching as high as 18.5C (65F) in Mildenhall. People even headed for the beach, while others took advantage of outdoor attractions over the Easter break.

Dan Holley, meteorologist at Weatherquest, said: “The cold weather is here for the coming week. Places like Cumbria have seen significant drifts, with cars being buried underneath the snow. Thankfully, its intensity eased when it reached this part of the world. It has been mainly light but persistent in nature and will peter out going into this afternoon.

“It is going to turn very cold but winds will continue to keep temperatures warmer than they could be.”

The unseasonal weather comes as the UK prepares to enter British Summer Time next Sunday. Bookmakers Ladbrokes have cut the odds of snow at Easter to 5/4 after taking a flurry of bets in the past 48 hours. If it does snow, it would be the first white Easter in five years.

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Forecasters have predicted it could be the coldest March in 50 years. In 1962, average temperatures for the month were 2.8C (37F).

Recent snowfall was caused by an Atlantic front from the south west meeting cold easterly winds.

Tomorrow is expected to be dry and sunny but still very cold. The entire week will be dominated by easterly winds, with one or two light coastal snow showers predicted for Wednesday and Thursday.

Hazardous driving conditions were reported across the county yesterday morning because of ice and overnight snowfall. Police said there had been several minor crashes but no serious accidents.

Drivers faced hold-ups on the A14 after accidents led to lane closures and blockages. A lane of the westbound carriageway was closed at junction 40 for Higham because of an overturned car. The eastbound carriageway was blocked about half a mile east of the Orwell Bridge, near junction 57 for the Nacton interchange, following a single vehicle collision. Paramedics and firefighters attended.

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