Forecasters say big freeze will be over by weekend

Gritters have been out in the Capital but forecasters today predicted temperatures will be back in double figures by the weekend.

Council bosses said a number of precautions had been taken to ensure the city continued to function as snow was expected to hit the Lothians this morning.

A Met Office spokesman said higher areas such as Balerno would see snowfall, with drier conditions expected in the Capital and the surrounding areas from lunchtime.

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The Meadows, which was last week basking in glorious sunshine, was a different picture today.

Heavy snow fell in most parts of northern Scotland overnight, with 17cm recorded in Aviemore in the Highlands and temperatures of close to -2C in Glen Ogle.

Amber weather warnings were issued in much of Scotland including Fife and South West Scotland. Edinburgh Airport and Lothian Buses said they would be keeping an eye on the situation to ensure key services were maintained.

A spokeswoman for the city council said gritters had been sent out last night and early this morning to patrol and treat surfaces. She said staff were on stand-by throughout the night and more resources had been available if needed.

She added that all “priority one” roads and nine priority pavement routes had been treated from 5am this morning, with “priority two” road routes and other pavement routes treated afterwards.

A spokesman for Edinburgh Airport said: “We will be monitoring the weather forecasts closely. We have our snow teams ready and on stand-by.

“We will also be working with our handling agents and the airlines to share information and stay aware of developments in the weather.”

A spokeswoman for Lothian Buses said: “In line with our ongoing winter resilience programme, we are closely monitoring the weather forecast.”

Peter Sloss, duty forecaster at the Met Office in Aberdeen, said today:”At the weekend temperatures will begin to get back to 10 or 12C, which is what is expected in April across Scotland. By Friday or Saturday we might see temperatures of 14C.”