A wet Friday is in store for much of the country, with several weather warnings issued. Rain will move northeast across the UK and will be heaviest in central and southwest of Scotland and Northern Ireland, with around 20-30mm of rain falling quite widely across these areas, with in excess of 60mm possible through the day in Scotland, and around 40mm possible in some spots in Northern Ireland.  

An amber warning for rain for southwest Scotland has also been issued for Friday morning. Accumulations of 50mm are expected quite widely, with in excess of 70mm possible in some upland locations. 

Over high ground in the north of Scotland, it’s likely this will fall as snow for a time, with accumulations of up to 10cm possible over the Grampians and places further north over 200m. Some strong winds are expected to accompany the conditions on Friday, with coasts of Northern Ireland and western Scotland likely to see gusts of around 60mph.  

The wet and windy weather is being pushed on by a strong jet stream, which is the driving force behind much of the weather the UK experiences.  

Although the cold weather in North America isn’t directly impacting the UK’s weather, the temperature contrast across the Atlantic is strengthening the jet stream, leading to a succession of low-pressure systems impacting the UK in the coming days.  

New Year Forecast 

The New Year weekend will see a continuation of wet and windy weather, with the heaviest and more persistent rain expected on Saturday.  

Met Office Deputy Chief Meteorologist Helen Caughey said: “It’ll be an unsettled New Year weekend for much of the UK, with frequent and at times heavy rain, and a chance this could turn to snow mainly across high ground in Scotland, although there remains a lot of uncertainty where the boundary between the milder and colder air will be. 

“New Year’s Eve will be the wetter of the two days, with a number of fronts bringing rain to many areas, especially parts Scotland as well as south and south-west England, where there will also be some very strong winds along the English Channel. What that leaves behind is an unsettled New Year’s Day, with central and southern parts of the UK likely to see further showers and some longer spells of rain. Further north things are a little more uncertain, but generally a mix of sunshine and showers here, mainly in the east, before conditions look likely to become more widely settled into Monday.” 

Further weather warnings are likely to be required once locations of the rainfall are more certain so make sure to keep up to date with the forecasts for latest information.  

Further ahead 

Next week, the outlook suggests a southeast and northwest split will likely develop, as high pressure clings on to the south, with low pressure to the north. This is likely to allow for calmer weather further south and more unsettled conditions further north, with showers, some longer spells of rain and strong winds. However, the details of how this split will materialise remains uncertain, especially with how far south and east any rainfall and strong wind will reach, but confidence should improve in the coming days.  

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