Weather warnings have been upgraded as Storm Christoph threatens to bring challenging conditions to some parts of the country.

Forecasters say rain will increasingly turn to snow during Wednesday and overnight into Thursday and may bring disruption in southern Scotland, while there are warnings of snow and ice in the north.

The Met Office has upgraded a warning of snow from yellow to amber for south-west Scotland, Lothian, the Borders and South Lanarkshire, forecasting that heavy snow will develop later on Wednesday and overnight into Thursday and is likely to bring travel disruption.

The alert, valid from 6pm on Wednesday until 8am on Thursday, says 5-10 cm of snow is likely to accumulate across most of the warning area, with 10-20cm above 200m elevation and perhaps around 30cm above 400m.

Yellow weather warnings of snow for Strathclyde and Dumfries and Galloway are in force until 10am on Thursday.

HeraldScotland:

A yellow warning of snow and ice is in place for Grampian and the Highlands until midnight on Wednesday.

The Met Office has also issued a yellow weather warning of heavy rain for Grampian, the Highlands and Orkney and Shetland which is valid from midnight on Wednesday until midday on Friday.

It states: “Persistent, heavy rain associated with Storm Christoph is expected to affect the north and north-east of mainland Scotland as well as Orkney early on Thursday before slowly pulling away on Friday.”

Forecasters warn the heavy rain is expected to cause some travel disruption and possible flooding on Thursday and Friday morning.

Authorities have reminded people they should only travel for essential reasons under current coronavirus restrictions, and to take care if they do have to go out.

Nithsdale police in southern Scotland tweeted: “Remember there are #weather warnings in place for today due to #StormChristoph.

“Please #staysafe & due to #covid19 you should only leave home for essential journeys.”

Police Scotland tweeted: “Weather Warning – Travel with Caution.

“The @metoffice has issued a yellow weather warning for snow across parts of Scotland from Wednesday through to midday on Thursday.”

Some parts of the UK could see two months’ worth of average rainfall in just two-and-a-half days as Storm Christoph moves in, with England expected to bear the brunt of the bad weather.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) has issued two flood alerts, one in the Borders and one in Edinburgh and the Lothians.

Jim Fraser, emergency planning officer at Scottish Borders Council, said: “The next couple of days are going to bring further challenging weather conditions for the Borders, first in the form of heavy rain and then snow.

“With already saturated ground, we are closely monitoring the situation and liaising with our Sepa and Met Office colleagues around the potential for localised flooding, particularly later today and into Wednesday.

“The council is well prepared and able to respond to any issues that do occur over the coming days to support our communities, but please play your part and take notice of the warning and take action where required.”