The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning covering the entire UK as gale force winds prepare to batter the nation.

Its yellow warning has been put in place for this weekend from late Saturday through Sunday, with up to 80mph gusts expected.

It warns of power cuts, damage to buildings, massive waves in coastal areas and delays to road, rail, air and ferry transport.

The warning reads: "Very strong winds are likely across much of the UK later Saturday and through Sunday.

"Gusts of 50 to 60 mph are likely across many inland areas, with gusts 70, possibly 80 mph around some exposed coasts and hills, especially in the north and west.

The Met Office's weather warning covers the entire UK

"Heavy rain will be an additional hazard, especially over western hills.

"Winds of this strength across a wide area have the potential to produce disruption to transport, along with some coastal impacts, especially in the west."

The warning comes after BBC meteorologist Tomasz Schafernaker warned that nasty conditions brewing in the Atlantic were heading Britain's way.

He had said: "Some absolutely ferocious weather developing there out across the Atlantic and the thinking is that there could be multiple storms heading in our direction."

Winds could gust up to 80mph in parts of the country

He said the storms would hit this weekend, but that it was "way too early" for details on exactly when and where the storms would strike.

It comes after weather maps yesterday revealed a huge snow cloud is set to sweep the UK next week and dump 20cm of the white stuff in parts of England.

The wintry conditions are set to be unleashed by an Arctic blast which will hit the next next Monday.