Heavy showers are sweeping across Britain today before a mini-heatwave is set to turn the island into a summer paradise by the weekend.
Forecasters say that some parts of England and Wales will have heavy rain today while further showers will be in the north of the UK before Friday, Saturday and Sunday turns largely dry.
However, the Met Office has said there is a possibility of ‘thundery showers’ in the south of England this weekend which might dash the hope of some planning for sunny days off.
The national weather service said it seems likely that temperatures could reach mid-20s at times in parts of the south and are likely to be between 22C and 23C.
A woman struggles as heavy rain and strong winds hit the Plymouth seafront in Devon on May 11
The Met Office has said there is a possibility of ‘thundery showers’ in the south of England this weekend which might dash the hope of some planning for sunny days off. Pictured: Today a man battling the wind and rain in Devon
A spokesman for the Met Office told the MailOnline: ‘It’s largely unsettled today and tomorrow. There is a band of rain currently moving eastward over England and Wales bringing occasionally heavy rain to the south of the UK’
People out and about enjoying the sunny weather on the beach in Bournemouth, Dorset yesterday before the weather started to turn wet
You can see the wet weather sweeping across the south today, on left, while the rain is forecasted to be largely in the south, the north will turn wetter later on, right
Promenade walkers in Bournemouth, Dorset yesterday before the weather started to becoming cold and wet today in parts of the south
Meanwhile, there will be cooler and breezier conditions on Thursday before it heats up.
The UK’s hottest day so far this year was on April 15, recorded in St James’s Park, London, where temperatures reached 23.4C (74.12F).
But on Sunday, we could see temperatures skyrocket to get into the ‘hot’ threshold, potentially reaching over 25C (77F).
The heatwave thresholds for the UK are 25C (77F) across the north and west of Britain. Central London is 28C (82.4F), 27C (80.6F) for London’s neighbouring counties, and 26C (78.8F) on areas surrounding those.
A spokesman for the Met Office told the MailOnline: ‘It’s largely unsettled today and tomorrow. There is a band of rain currently moving eastward over England and Wales bringing occasionally heavy rain to the south of the UK.
‘Once that has passed, the majority of any further showers will be confined to the north and north west of the UK. The weekend will be largely dry with perhaps a chance of thundery showers in the south.
‘Temperatures in the south at the weekend could reach 22-23C. Next week there’s some uncertainty in the forecast about the extent of any warm air over the UK so it’s not possible to be precise about temperatures, but it seems likely that temperatures could reach mid-20s at times in parts of the south.’
The weather service also said today there will be some ‘sunny spells for Scotland and Northern Ireland, but also some showers’.
While Thursday is going to be dry with some sunshine in the southeast but ‘cloudier and windier’ in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
The weekend is supposed to be mainly ‘fine and dry’ but with a possibility of ‘thundery showers’
However, the weather service also says high temperatures will return to most of the UK.
This weekend’s forecasted temperatures will be hotter than holiday hotspot Turkey, where it will be 23C (73.4F) on Sunday in Istanbul.
Cannes in France will only reach highs of 22C (71.6F) on Sunday, as well as Porto in Portugal, and Gibraltar.
Benidorm in Spain will see temperatures of 24C (75.2F) on Saturday and Sunday, with Greek island Santorini only just in the 20s with highs of 21C (69.8F) on both days over the weekend.
Crowds flock to the beach at the seaside resort of Lyme Regis to soak up the hot sunshine and clear blue skies on May 7
BBC weather forecaster Stav Danaos said: ‘For the next few days it is going to remain breezy rather unsettled, low pressure nearby and we are going to see showers or even longer spells of rain.
‘For Wednesday this feature could bring some significant rainfall to parts of England and Wales throughout the day.
‘Now some of that rain will really be quite heavy across parts of Wales, south west England through Wednesday morning and then that rain will push into the Midlands, parts of eastern England in the afternoon. I think the northern extent of it will be around the Greater Manchester area not further north than that.
‘But as this rain band begins to move south eastwards into East Anglia and the South East it will start to fragment. Again another windy day to come particularly across southern Britain with that rain band, quite gusty as well across the north and west of Scotland where we will see sunshine and showers.’
While BBC weather forecaster Tomasz Schafernaker said: ‘Thursday into Friday the high pressure starts to build in so this is where the sunny warmer, I’m not going to say better weather necessarily because we need the rainfall, but the warmer sunnier weather is to the south of us, we’ve got that more unsettled weather to the north again with hints of rain a cross parts of western Scotland.
‘But which ever way you look at it, it is really starting to settle down by Friday with widespread sunny skies and temperatures 20C in London.
‘Look at the outlooks, so Saturday, Sunday into next week we are talking about 20s, mid 20s across the south.’
Visitors wearing waterproof jackets enjoying an afternoon walk around the harbour in the light rain at the seaside resort of West Bay in Dorset on a wet overcast afternoon on Bank Holiday Monday, May 2
Pictured: Families and visitors enjoying an afternoon on the beach in the light rain at the seaside resort of West Bay in Dorset on a wet overcast afternoon on Bank Holiday Monday, May 2
Pictured: Visitors with waterproof jackets and an umbrella enjoying an afternoon walk around the harbour in the light rain at the seaside resort of West Bay in Dorset on a wet overcast afternoon on Bank Holiday Monday, May 2.
The brighter weather also means there are predicted to be 50 per cent more strawberries – a mix of glasshouse-grown and naturally on table tops in polytunnels – available next week compared to the same period last year, when the season was delayed by cold weather (file photo)
The news will also be particularly welcome for those planning to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee, when the Bank Holiday is forecast to see 5,000 tonnes of British strawberries bought that week.
Rupert Carter, technical director of producer WB Chambers Farms, said: ‘We have enjoyed bright days this spring coupled with cool nights, which allows strawberry plants to rest well and put their energy gained during the day into producing high natural sugars overnight.
‘This process makes the berries sweeter and is one of the main reasons for such good tasting fruit.’
British Summer Fruits chairman Nick Marston said: ‘It looks to be another fantastic year for British strawberries. However, rising energy and labour costs are presenting real challenges for UK berry growers.
‘Despite these challenges, British strawberries remain a true success story. The UK is totally self-sufficient in strawberries for the entire summer season which now runs from May to October as farms continue to advance growing techniques, such as large-scale glasshouse production for season extension. This allows us to offer shoppers locally-grown fresh berries for longer.’
Last year, Britons bought more than 87,000 tonnes of British strawberries.
The strawberry industry is now worth more than £769 million to the British economy, according to Kantar figures.