Today meteorological winter begins and as December gets off to a cold snap readers’ may be asking is it going to snow and what are the prospects of a white Christmas this year?

I can certainly provide some clues to what weather Hampshire and the Isle of Wight can expect during the next seven days or so, but the festive season is still some way off.

With small low pressure systems developing in the Bay of Biscay and then travelling northeast along the north France coast and, a northeast or easterly wind sweeping in from Scandinavia, a chilly spell is anticipated over the coming days. This will include below average temperatures by day and very frosty nights, particularly away from coastal districts. I think we will see a far amount of dry, but not necessarily bright weather but with an increasing risk of wintry precipitation developing as time passes. This may be in the form of showers or more prolonged rain, sleet or even snow in the mix, however, it must be stressed that inland Hampshire, is the most likely area of the two counties to see any white stuff.

Later, next week, the jet stream is likely to fire up again allowing Atlantic depressions and attendant weather fronts to track into to the British Isles, pushing aside a large anticyclone over continental Europe, thus feeding in much milder and unsettled conditions. However, various hi-tech computer-generated synoptic charts covering the northern hemisphere, are not in agreement, on the long-term pressure set-up. However, if I was a betting man, I would opt for milder weather returning towards the end of my forecast period.

Looking at temperature profiles, both daily maximums and night minimums will get off to a below average start before recovering later.

Some misty/foggy nights are possible and with the low temperatures, expect freezing fog which may be reluctant to clear on some mornings.

Readers can follow my regularly updated daily and weekly forecasts on X (formerly Twitter). My X site account handle is @HIOWweather.