A sharp twist in the jet stream is set to bring a blast of winter.
Met Office forecasters say some snow may fall in parts of the Midlands over the weekend – and temperatures will be bitterly cold.
The chilly outlook comes as Britain recovers from the effects of Storm Imogen, which struck on Monday.
Experts say the jet stream – a band of fast-moving wind high up in the atmosphere which has until now been positioned north steering storms in from the Atlantic – is about to dive southwards.
Grahame Madge, a spokesman for the Met Office, said: “Temperatures are expected to drop leading up to the weekend. Wintry showers are expected across the north of Britain and isolated patches of snow could reach higher ground as far south as the Midlands.
“A shift is expected next week and weather could be more changeable.
“No severe weather warnings have been issued for the next five days but we are continuing to monitor the situation.”