UK weather: Bookies slash white Christmas odds as bitterly cold snap strikes

With the aftermath of Storm Arwen continuing to bring snow and ice for much of Scotland and Northern England, William Hill’s odds on a White Christmas dropped to their lowest levels since 2017, the last time the UK saw snow fall on Christmas Day.

The MET office forecast detailing long periods of snowfall and freezing temperatures continues to unfold.

Blizzard conditions are hitting Scotland, parts of Northern England and Wales.

The sight of snow on the ground comes with a series of shots of arctic air set to sweep the UK in the coming weeks, as the Jet Stream dips southwards.

As a result, the UK will continue to experience bracing winds, freezing temperatures and snow, across large areas of Northern England.

It is now less than one month until Christmas Day and the thoughts are turning to the possibility of a white Christmas. Bookmaker, William Hill has cut the odds of 12 major UK airports to their lowest collective level since 2017.

The odds are the lowest they’ve been since 2017
LEON NEAL/AFP via Getty Images)

These latest weather developments have seen William Hill update their White Christmas market, with Scottish duo Edinburgh, which is more popular with customers, and Glasgow, which is further North, now reduced to 3-1 joint favourites, alongside Leeds, to see the idolised blankets of snow depicted in every idyllic Christmas scene.

As the cold air spreads, Leeds Bradford Airport, which itself is more than 700ft above sea level, holding the record for being the highest airport in the UK, is also 3-1 to be one of the first to record falling snowflakes on Christmas Day.

With Exacta Weather revealing that all things point to the most cold and wintry conditions since 2010, Liverpool and Manchester have been cut to 7-2 and 4-1, from 8-1 and 13-2 respectively.

Newcastle and Birmingham (both 4-1), Belfast (9-2), Dublin and London (both 6-1), and Bristol and Cardiff (both 8-1) complete the set, forming the lowest collective market since the last true white Christmas in the UK in 2017 – with 11 per cent of weather stations recording snow falling, but none recorded any on the ground.

The last widespread white Christmas in 2010 saw snow on the ground at 83 per cent of weather stations, while snow or sleet fell at 19 per cent of stations.

The national weather service declares that a white Christmas requires the observation of a single snowflake falling in the 24 hours of 25 December, at one of 12 major UK airports.

William Hill spokesperson, Rupert Adams, said: “It appears that this latest cold snap has arrived right on time and it is part of a bigger narrative which is expected to play out right up until the big day.

“The strongest La Nina weather phenomenon since 2010 should ensure a much colder than normal winter. And with each passing week, and snow now on the ground, the case for a White Christmas becomes more convincing.”

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