An Arctic blast is set to hit London with several days of subzero temperatures and the possibility of ‘thundersnow’ blizzards.
A blanket of snow could fall across the capital this week, according to forecasters.
The Met Office has issued snow warnings for Thursday and Friday.
Some areas are set to see temperatures drop below freezing, while commuters have been warned of “significant disruption” to travel.
A stream of cold air will spread across the country on Thursday with wind and snow warnings issued for London as well as the South East and South West England.
Grahame Madge, from the Met Office, said: “What we have got is a weather system that will be moving through southern England.
“It will be encountering cold air from Arctic Canada and there’s a possibility of snow forming and settling for a short while.
“It could have the potential to cause temporary but significant disruption to travel.”
He added: “Given the timing of Thursday’s warning, it spans the evening rush hour, so obviously we want drivers and commuters to be aware.”
Mr Madge said the likelihood of snow settling in the south of England was between 10 and 20 per cent.
He added: “People should heed the warning. Allow an hour longer for your journey and make sure your lights are working. If people are prepared then that should help ease the disruption a lot.”
The Met Office has also warned that “thundersnow” and lightning could accompany the heavier showers and disrupt power supplies.
Freezing temperatures are expected across the country, including -1 Celsius in London.
Mr Madge said: “We could see temperatures drop overnight quite low, certainly down well below freezing.
“Where there has been a lot of snow you could see further drops. It could get as low as -5C in parts of England.”