Drivers warned of 'widespread ice'

An "amber" warning, the second-highest weather alert level in the UK, has been issued by the Met Office for the north of England as the country's big freeze continues.

The alert warns motorists to be prepared for widespread ice on roads and pavements, and several "yellow" alerts for snow and ice remain in place in other areas of Scotland, England and Wales.

Forecasters said parts of the UK could be hit by up to 8cm (3in) of snowfall on Thursday while freezing rain could lead to treacherous conditions in other areas.

Nick Prebble, forecaster for the Press Association's MeteoGroup, said: "There will be a problem with freezing rain this morning which is going to start causing problems in southern Scotland and northern England. It will spread south east, and as it moves will turn into sleet and snow."

"From midday onwards, there will be snow falling, with between 4cm (1.6in) and 8cm (3in) possible. The areas worst affected are likely to be East Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and the East Midlands. There may well be snow flurries in London by the evening."

Copyright Press Association 2012