A ‘MINI ice-age’ winter blast will bring a colossal wall of snow smashing through Britain THIS MONTH as the nation braces for Arctic gales, blizzards and sub-zero temperatures.
Rare fluctuations in solar activity will drive a freak twists in the jet stream opening the floodgates to a bank of bitter Polar air during the second half of November, experts warn. Freezing winds and deep drifting snow will grind swathes of the country to a halt while violent storms threaten explosive outbreaks of thundersnow. Britons have been told to brace for weeks of severe disruption with savage weather expected to bring chaos on roads and transport networks through Christmas.
Long-range forecasters predict the most severe big freeze in a decade amid fears Arctic conditions will engulf the country into New Year.
The cold snap will bite in just over a week with weather charts revealing a plume of freezing air roaring into the UK from the North Pole via Scandinavia.
Piers Corbyn, forecaster for WeatherAction, said: “An active low-pressure system will move in from the northwest next week signalling a change to much colder conditions.
“We are expecting this to bring some early winter weather with heavy snow and very cold winds in the north and a risk of wintery showers even across southern Britain.
“This pattern is likely to hold out through the rest of the month and into December with a risk of blizzards in Scotland and the north and widespread snow showers.
“There will be a risk of travel disruption through this period with volatile, stormy weather combined with the cold brining a risk of winter thunderstorms and outbreaks of thunder snow.”
Fluctuating solar activity driving a spate of storms on the surface of the sun will trigger the early cold snap, he said.
It will cause the jet stream to twist and sweep southwards pulling a plume of freezing air in from the North Pole.
Solar activity and jet stream forecasts suggest a pattern of cold similar to the historic Mini Ice Age which occurred during the mid-17th century.
The period otherwise known as the Little Ice Age gripped Europe and North America and saw Britons hold frost fairs on the frozen River Thames.
“What we are looking at is a pattern of circulation similar to that which was observed during the mini ice-age,” Mr Corbyn said.
“This will bring a displaced Polar vortex down across northern Europe during the second half of November allowing very cold air from the North Pole to sink across the UK.
“This will have some major impacts in Britain, Ireland and Europe including the risk of blizzards, widespread snow and sustained bitter cold winds into the start of next month.
“Part of the reason for this again is the effect of solar activity on the jet stream causing it to meander and twist southwards allowing a cold airflow from the north to establish.”
Britain’s weather will start to turn colder during the last 10 days of November, according to UK weather models.
Freezing air will sweep in from the north and north-east bringing to an end the current unusually mild spell.
Warm winds drifting in from the Continent through the coming days will push the mercury into double figures across the country.
High pressure will bring a brief halt to the autumnal wind and rain allowing the nation to enjoy a late burst of autumn sunshine.
However temperatures will nosedive through the last part of the month putting parts of the country at risk of snow, the Met Office said.
Its long range outlook states: “There will be an increasing chance of some more unsettled interludes developing [during the last week of November], with showers or longer spells of rain spreading to many areas at times.
“Temperatures are likely to be below average overall, with a marked increase in the likelihood and extent of frosts, with any milder interludes likely to be short lived.