Freezing fog hits Britain on Christmas Day with motorists warned as visibility is cut to 50 yards

A weather warning has been issued as freezing fog hits Britain this morning with motorists warned of reduced visibility – yet in some parts of the country Christmas Day began with a glorious sunrise. 

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning from 3pm Christmas Eve to 11am today covering large swathes of the country.

It said fog or freezing fog patches which could be dense in places are expected from the South West to the East Midlands, and Yorkshire and the Humber.

But further north, at Whitley Bay, North Tyneside, residents woke to a gorgeous sunrise with a relatively mild Christmas Day predicted. 

Although parts of the country woke up to freezing fog, elsewhere many witnessed a glorious sunrise. Pictured is the sun rising over the North Sea at Whitley Bay, North Tyneside today 

Although parts of the country woke up to freezing fog, elsewhere many witnessed a glorious sunrise. Pictured is the sun rising over the North Sea at Whitley Bay, North Tyneside today 

Although parts of the country woke up to freezing fog, elsewhere many witnessed a glorious sunrise. Pictured is the sun rising over the North Sea at Whitley Bay, North Tyneside today 

Freezing fog patches are expected in the East Midlands, and Yorkshire and the Humber. But further north, at Whitley Bay, North Tyneside there was a glorious sunrise on what is expected to be a relatively mild Christmas Day

Freezing fog patches are expected in the East Midlands, and Yorkshire and the Humber. But further north, at Whitley Bay, North Tyneside there was a glorious sunrise on what is expected to be a relatively mild Christmas Day

Freezing fog patches are expected in the East Midlands, and Yorkshire and the Humber. But further north, at Whitley Bay, North Tyneside there was a glorious sunrise on what is expected to be a relatively mild Christmas Day

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning from 3pm on Christmas Eve to 11am today covering large swathes of the country. Frost-covered trees are pictured here reflected in the River Forth at the Carse of Stirling earlier yesterday

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning from 3pm on Christmas Eve to 11am today covering large swathes of the country. Frost-covered trees are pictured here reflected in the River Forth at the Carse of Stirling earlier yesterday

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning from 3pm on Christmas Eve to 11am today covering large swathes of the country. Frost-covered trees are pictured here reflected in the River Forth at the Carse of Stirling earlier yesterday

It could be quite a mild Christmas Day with temperatures rising to about 9C in London and 7C or 8C in urban areas, but colder temperatures on the east coast of about 4C or 5C. Pictured: Windsor Long Walk yesterday morning 

It could be quite a mild Christmas Day with temperatures rising to about 9C in London and 7C or 8C in urban areas, but colder temperatures on the east coast of about 4C or 5C. Pictured: Windsor Long Walk yesterday morning 

It could be quite a mild Christmas Day with temperatures rising to about 9C in London and 7C or 8C in urban areas, but colder temperatures on the east coast of about 4C or 5C. Pictured: Windsor Long Walk yesterday morning 

Leaves covered with a layer of frost as freezing fog drifts through the Carse of Stirling early on Christmas Eve. A weather warning for fog will be in place for parts of the country until 11am today

Leaves covered with a layer of frost as freezing fog drifts through the Carse of Stirling early on Christmas Eve. A weather warning for fog will be in place for parts of the country until 11am today

Leaves covered with a layer of frost as freezing fog drifts through the Carse of Stirling early on Christmas Eve. A weather warning for fog will be in place for parts of the country until 11am today

Alex Deakin issues the forecast for Christmas Day warning of freezing fog in certain parts of Britain today. Colder temperatures are expected on the east coast of about 4C or 5C

Alex Deakin issues the forecast for Christmas Day warning of freezing fog in certain parts of Britain today. Colder temperatures are expected on the east coast of about 4C or 5C

Alex Deakin issues the forecast for Christmas Day warning of freezing fog in certain parts of Britain today. Colder temperatures are expected on the east coast of about 4C or 5C

In those areas affected by fog, visibility could be cut to 50 yards in the worst-hit areas and the Met Office said it could lead to slower journey times.

It could be quite a mild Christmas Day with temperatures rising to about 9C in London and 7C or 8C in urban areas, but colder temperatures on the east coast of about 4C or 5C.

The Met Office said: ‘Not everywhere will see fog, but where it does form, the visibility may fall to around 50 metres at times.

‘Fog will tend to thin and lift in western and some central areas of England overnight, but will be slow to clear on Christmas Day in the east, perhaps persisting for much or all of the day in parts of eastern England.’

Despite roads being busy, the RAC said on Monday conditions on Christmas Eve had been ‘pretty smooth’ with no major problems reported.

Main motorways did see some delays but traffic was generally good, despite an additional two-and-a-half million vehicles on the road.

A RAC spokesman said: ‘Some areas have been busy around town centres today due to last-minute shopping, but it’s mostly local congestion.’

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning from 3pm Christmas Eve to 11am today covering large swathes of the country

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning from 3pm Christmas Eve to 11am today covering large swathes of the country

It said fog or freezing fog patches which could be dense in places are expected from the South West to the East Midlands, and Yorkshire and the Humber

It said fog or freezing fog patches which could be dense in places are expected from the South West to the East Midlands, and Yorkshire and the Humber

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning from 3pm Christmas Eve to 11am today covering large swathes of the country

Highways England lifted more than 200 miles of roadworks on the country’s motorways and major A-roads on Friday to ensure more than 97% of its network is open.

But drivers were being hit with Christmas getaway fuel costs at a five-year high, with UK forecourts charging motorists an average of £1.21 per litre for petrol and £1.31 per litre for diesel, according to Government data.

The last time prices were this high in the run-up to Christmas was 2013.

People hoping to escape motoring misery were warned to plan ahead due to planned engineering works on train lines.

As usual, there are no trains on Christmas Day and only a limited service will run on Boxing Day.

But some of Network Rail’s 330 Christmas engineering projects have already begun, forcing a number of lines to be closed.

Fog is expected in some parts of the country today, but will clear into the afternoon. But the weather will remain cloudy over the next couple of days (pictured)

Fog is expected in some parts of the country today, but will clear into the afternoon. But the weather will remain cloudy over the next couple of days (pictured)

Fog is expected in some parts of the country today, but will clear into the afternoon. But the weather will remain cloudy over the next couple of days (pictured)

These include no services between London Victoria – the UK’s second busiest station – and Clapham Junction until January 2 due to track renewal.

Crossrail work means there are no trains operating to or from London Paddington on December 30, with a reduced service on December 27, 28, 29 and 31 which could cause problems for airline passengers using Heathrow Airport.

Liverpool Lime Street will have an amended service from Monday until New Year’s Day, affecting Virgin Trains, East Midlands Trains, London Northwestern Railway and Northern.

There are improvement projects at numerous other locations and passengers are urged to check the National Rail Enquiries website before they travel.

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