Bookmakers have slashed the odds of a white Christmas as forecasters claim we may be in for the coldest winter in eight years.

After recent mild winters, this winter is poised to be slightly colder than average, The Weather Company said.

It reports Britain faces -10C Arctic influxes bringing snow, ice and travel disruption in the run-up to Christmas.

It will be the coldest winter since 2012-13 if the UK average temperature is just 0.2C below normal, at 3.5C or lower, Met Office records show

The Met Office has warned of below-average temperatures in December and a higher chance of winter cold spells than recent years.

It comes as popular bookmakers have cut the odds on snow falling in the UK on Christmas Day.

Ladbrokes now make it just 5/4 for a white Christmas, having been 6/4 earlier this month, with Edinburgh and Newcastle the most likely cities to see snow at 3/1.

Alex Apati of Ladbrokes said: "It's looking likely we'll be waking up to the white stuff on Christmas Day as temperatures continue to tumble to snowfall territory."

Ladbrokes say the latest bets show the odds of snow falling on December 25 in the UK are 5/4.

London is 5-1 now for snow on December 25.

The definition that the Met Office uses to define a white Christmas is for one snowflake to be observed falling in the 24 hours of 25 December somewhere in the UK.

The last widespread white Christmas in the UK was in 2010 with snow on the ground at 83% of the Met Office's stations – the highest amount ever recorded.