The frigid picture was painted by a Met Desk chart which predicted that Sunday, in particular, would be extremely cold. The chart, which measured the extent to which temperatures are expected to deviate from average, predicted that much of central and southern England would be up to eight degrees Celsius colder than the norm. All parts of the UK are projected to be anonymously cold – even northern Scotland is likely to be three or four degrees colder than usual.
But it is not just Britain that is expected to suffer, as a cold air mass grips swathes of Europe too.
BBC Weather forecaster Darren Bett warned there could be “dangerous travelling conditions” in Finland as snow continues to fall.
The BBC’s Ben Rich said an area of high pressure will take charge for most of northern Europe on Tuesday, which will offer fine and settled weather for much of Scandinavia, the British Isles and into northern Germany.
But the BBC Weather forecaster warned that as soon as the weather front moves out cooler air will push in and cause temperatures to plummet.
Mr Rich said: “We do have one area of low pressure spinning across the northeast of Europe, feeding some snow one again across Finland.
“On the eastern flank of that low, some pretty warm air wafting its way northwards into the likes of Moscow.
“Now, further south, things generally very unsettled. Lots of showers and thunderstorms flinging themselves through the Mediterranean, across the Balkans, parts of Greece and Turkey.
“Lots of heavy downpours across Italy on Wednesday. Perhaps not as many showers at this stage across southern Spain and the southern half of Portugal.”
For the UK, Met Office meteorologist Aidan McGivern has warned a frost will hit many parts overnight on Tuesday through to Wednesday morning.
He said: “There will be quite a lot of clear sky overnight on Tuesday into Wednesday morning, this will mean that temperatures will fall away.
“We’ve got colder air in place and widespread frost for central and northern areas gardeners watch out!”
It looks set for a break in the wet conditions as Mr McGivern says, “then there will be a bright start to Wednesday.”
He added: “For many areas, there will be thicker cloud across eastern Scotland into eastern England that will tend to drift its way westward throughout the day.
“Wednesday will see the southwest start the day with showers, but soon enough the sunshine will replace those showers and temperatures will increase to 12 or 14C.”