South Tynesiders enjoy mild start to 2016 – but what’s in store?

A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - riding the train in the South Marine Park.
A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - riding the train in the South Marine Park.

It was a crisp but mild start to 2016 for our region as people headed out for some fresh air after celebrating the New Year.

It was a bright start before clouds swept over as temperatures hovered around 5C.

A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - a daffodil springs to life in the grounds of St Paul's Church, Jarrow.  PICTURE: TIM RICHARDSON.

A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - a daffodil springs to life in the grounds of St Paul's Church, Jarrow. PICTURE: TIM RICHARDSON.

Our photographers went out and captured these snaps of people enjoying our coast - and they even found a daffodil in bloom!

Last year saw the warmest December on record, as well as one of the wettest and windiest.

So what’s in store as we move into 2016?

Things aren’t looking good.

A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - dog walkers on the South Pier.

A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - dog walkers on the South Pier.

Flood warnings remain in place across the UK as forecasters predict more rain, and even snow, for the start of 2016.

More than a dozen Environment Agency (EA) warnings to expect flooding remained in place for parts of the Midlands, North East, North West and Wales as the Met Office issued a yellow alert for “spells of persistent and heavy rain” throughout Friday.

And clean-up efforts in flood-hit areas of Scotland hit by Storm Frank could be hampered by ice and snow.

The Met Office forecast for South Tyneside:

A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - couple walking their dogs in the North Marine Park.

A mild start to the New Year on South Tyneside - couple walking their dogs in the North Marine Park.

Tonight: A breezy night with rain spreading quickly across the region through the evening. This may be heavy at times and wintry initially over high ground before turning to rain everywhere. Minimum Temperature 4°C.

Saturday: Feeling cold with rain through much of the day which may be heavy at times. Winds becoming lighter by evening however. Maximum Temperature 8°C.

Outlook for Sunday to Tuesday: Mostly cold, wet and windy through Sunday with persistent rain, heaviest over hills, and strong southeasterly winds. Some brighter spells possible Monday and Tuesday but rain at times. Lighter winds.

Earlier, the EA said flood-ravaged regions will continue to face high river levels, particularly the River Severn in parts of Shropshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire and the River Ouse near York.

The levels are expected to gradually fall over the weekend and all severe flood warnings have been removed.

Chris Hogan, a forecaster for MeteoGroup, said: “Today we are going to get a frontal system coming off the Atlantic which will hit Cornwall in the morning and then move up, pushing across the country.

“It should clear overnight into Saturday to a few scattered showers. There are still flood risks but the rain is not quite as torrential as we have been having.”

The Met Office has issued yellow ‘’be aware’’ warnings for snow and ice covering Northern Ireland and parts of Scotland, including Dumfries and Galloway, Strathclyde, Grampian and the Highlands.

Its rain warning said up to 20mm could fall in areas in the South West and South Wales, rising to as much as 50mm in hilly areas such as the Brecon Beacons and Dartmoor.

Looking ahead to the weekend, the forecaster said similar amounts of rain could be expected on Sunday.

“Following a brief respite on Saturday night, a further frontal system will bring more rain to these same areas through Sunday morning before clearing away north-eastwards during Sunday afternoon,” it said on its website.

“Be aware that some local disruption from surface water and river flooding looks likely.

“While these amounts of rain wouldn’t usually lead to many impacts, given the saturated nature of the ground there is a greater risk of localised surface water flooding that might normally be expected. Some rivers within the area also remain high.”