A weather warning is in place with “high chances” of a cold snap hitting the South East of England.

The Met Office has warned there is a 70 per cent chance of severe cold weather, icy conditions and heavy snow across the region.

Public Health England is urging people to prepare.

Plummeting temperatures are expected to bite across the South East from 6pm on Sunday through to 6pm on Tuesday.

Dr Owen Landeg, principal environmental public health scientist at Public Health England, said: “Older people and those with heart and lung problems are at risk of getting sick in cold weather.

“Keep an eye out for those who may need help staying warm, ensure they wear lots of thin layers and have everything they need.

“Below 18 degrees, changes to the body mean that the risk of strokes, heart attacks and chest infections increase so heating homes to this temperature is particularly important to stay well.”

Essex County Council deployed gritters this morning as road temperatures fell well below zero.

Nick Silkstone, deputy chief meteorologist at the Met Office said: “High pressure is in place across the UK this weekend bringing settled, mainly dry, but also cold weather for many.

“It will be colder than of late with temperatures dropping below freezing overnight and a chance of widespread frost but with sunny spells throughout the day.

“However, at the start of next week the chance of fog and cloud will increase across central and southern areas which will mean that it will also feel colder by day.”