Heavy snow and freezing rain is set to batter the UK this week, with warnings issued over potential power cuts and travel delays.

Flurries of snow are expected throughout the day and into tomorrow with the real bad weather set to hit on Saturday, when a yellow weather warning is in place for Lancashire and Greater Manchester.

Over the coming days temperatures are set to hit freezing in both areas.

There is a chance of travel delays on roads with some stranded vehicles and passengers, along with delayed or cancelled rail and air travel expected. 

There is also a small chance that power cuts will occur and that other services, such as mobile phone coverage, may be affected.

Meanwhile up to 30cm of snow could fall on Thursday in Scotland, where an amber weather warning is in place.

The temperature is also expected to be as low as minus 7C (19F) in the east of England on Wednesday night and possibly minus 11C or minus 12C (10-12F) in Scotland.

The rest of England will see heavy rainfall, particularly in London and the South East, while Wales and Northern Ireland are predicted to stay mostly dry.

John Griffiths, a Met Office forecaster, said: “On Thursday a band of rain, sleet and snow will hit parts of Scotland and northern England, which will slowly extend south to the Midlands as the day progresses.

“It is expected to be very cold in these areas, dropping below 0C (32F) in Scotland and parts of northern England.

“This will start to gradually ease and die out during the evening, with frost and freezing fog coming in.”

Mr Griffiths said Friday will “start cold and foggy”, with most areas becoming dry and bright over the rest of the day.

He said a yellow weather warning is also in place on Saturday, which could see heavy snow across parts of Scotland to central parts of England.