A COLD weather alert for Dorset and Hampshire has been issued by the Met Office.

The level 2 alert warns of an 80 per cent probability of severe cold weather between 9am on Saturday, February 6 and 9pm on Tuesday, February 9.

A Met Office spokesman said: "This weather could increase the health risks to vulnerable patients and disrupt the delivery of services."

READ: Dorset could see snow this weekend

Snow could be on the way for Dorset

Snow could be on the way for Dorset

Although temperatures will generally rise today, it will become colder over the weekend, forecasters say.

The Met Office spokesman said: " Indications are that all parts of England may be going into a more notable cold spell of weather as we head into the coming week with sharp overnight frosts, and temperatures near freezing by day. "At present this is Level 2, but may well go to Level 3 as confidence increases."

Level 2 is triggered by the Met Office as soon as the risk of cold weather rises above 60 per cent.

Meanwhile, Level 3 is the severe weather action warning – which requires social and healthcare services to target specific actions at high risk groups.