Snow is due to fall at the weekend as icy temperatures in Britain reached as low as minus 11C in Chesham, Buckinghamshire.
A maximum of 2C is expected across the UK today and ice is due in parts of the country with snow predicted for Wales, south-west Scotland and much of England on Saturday.
Companies which offerbreakdown cover have already reported much more business than usual, and on Thursday they expected that due to a rise in the number of flat batteries they would be called out to more than 17,000 breakdown incidents.
The Met Office has also issued its first country-wide Level 3 Cold Weather Alert of the winter. This is the second most serious type of alert and has been relayed to groups such as Age UK which help the elderly.
Copyright Press Association 2012