A tornado left a trail of destruction today after ripping through a village in the New Forest in the early hours.
The extreme weather ripped apart garden fence panels which smashed into glass doors in Barton-on-Sea in Hampshire at 4am – while roof tiles were flung across the area and conservatories were damaged.
It comes as temperatures will fall to -5C (23F) this weekend as Britain is hit by the first cold snap of the year.
Barton-on-Sea resident Dave Thorne told the Southampton Daily Echo: ‘We woke up at about 4am. There was some noise and the weather was bad. The noise was like an express train and there was a massive crash.
The extreme weather ripped apart garden fence panels which smashed into glass doors in Barton-on-Sea in Hampshire today
The tornado left a trail of destruction today after it ripped through the village in the New Forest in the early hours of today
‘We wondered what was going on. Our neighbour said he saw what seemed like a white light. When we went to look we saw all the fences were broken. People have lost roof tiles. There is a little trail of destruction.’
‘It looks like the tornado has gone down our back gardens. To be honest I was quite concerned until I realised it was just a tornado because it didn’t feel like it. It sounded like armageddon. The sound was just incredible.’
This weekend, sub-zero conditions are expected as bitterly north-easterly winds sweep the nation – with wintry weather continuing next week as stormy conditions are forecast to return to Scotland and northern England.
The coldest areas early tomorrow morning will be Northern Ireland at -3C (27F) and West Wales at -2C (28F), before the early hours of Sunday bring lows of -5C (23F) to the same areas as well as Scotland.
This graphic shows where the tornado ripped through the Hampshire village of Barton-on-Sea at about 4am this morning
Fence panels were ripped apart, roof tiles were flung across the New Forest village today and conservatories were damaged
A brick wall was also destroyed by the tornado which ripped through the seaside village of Barton-on-Sea this morning
Roof tiles were ripped off this property in Barton-on-Sea this morning as a tornado swept through the Hampshire village
The change in weather – following three storms in four days this week reaching gusts of up to 121mph – will be driven in part by winter storms in the US jolting the UK’s jet stream allowing high pressure to build.
A relatively flat jet stream has been steering low pressure systems towards Britain, but this is set to change as a winter storm exits North America into the western Atlantic Ocean.
As the storm heads into the Atlantic, it helps to buckle the jet stream – pushing low pressure towards Greenland and allowing high pressure to form over the UK. This will bring a dry and fine but cold weekend with frosts.
However a flooding risk remains – mostly in the South and Midlands – after the Environment Agency issued 161 flood alerts, which mean flooding is possible, and 14 flood warnings, meaning flooding is expected, in England.
Rain will affect some parts of the country today including the South East and Midlands, as well as parts of northern Scotland
The coldest areas early on Saturday morning will be Northern Ireland at -3C (27F) and West Wales at -2C (28F)
The early hours of Sunday morning will bring lows of -5C (23F) to Northern Ireland as well as Scotland
A flooding risk remains – mostly in the South and Midlands – after the Environment Agency issued 161 flood alerts (in orange), which mean flooding is possible, and 14 flood warnings (in red), meaning flooding is expected, in England
Met Office meteorologist Bonnie Diamond said: ‘There is going to be a big change in the weather this weekend with high pressure arriving bringing much calmer but colder conditions.
‘Overnight temperatures could dip widely to or below freezing and there will be the risk of showers along eastern coasts. As we enter a north-easterly flow, there will be a risk of snow showers along the coasts.
‘Next week, high pressure over southern and central regions will bring more settled weather while the north could turn more unsettled again with a risk of showers and strong winds.
‘There are signs that as we head towards the end of January, high pressure will linger across southern England while there is the chance of more unsettled conditions further north.’