Britain’s weather turned on its head today following a dismal May so far – with some areas set to enjoy temperatures hotter than Ibiza just in time for the bank holiday weekend.
After weeks of downpours and below-average temperatures, forecasters are predicting a brighter end to the month and warm temperatures with sunny spells for much of the UK over the next two weeks.
London and central parts of England could see temperatures climb to as much as 73F (23C) over the weekend and highs of 72F (22) on Bank Holiday Monday.
The last time temperatures were this high was on March 30 which brought the UK’s hottest day of the year so far with 76.1F (24.5C) recorded in London.
Other parts of the South East, Wales and the North West are predicted to see top temperatures of around 68F (20C).
Oli Claydon, meteorologist from the Met Office, said: ‘Showers will start to ease and temperatures will increase over the bank holiday. There’ll be highs of up to 73F for central parts of England and possibly into London.
Visitors enjoy the hot weather on the beach at Bournemouth in Dorset last summer on June 25, 2020
‘There is a slow progression towards warmer and drier conditions.’
Wet weather has dominated the forecast this month, with Wales recording 200.7mm of rain – double the monthly average – making it the wettest May in records dating back to 1862.
Dorset, Bristol and eastern parts of Scotland have also been particularly hard-hit by downpours. Across the UK, it has been the 10th wettest May on record, according to Met Office figures.
Showers eased yesterday and saw the arrival of clearer skies and today, some warm sunshine should be expected through the afternoon as temperatures climb into the mid 60s.
Describing today’s forecast, Met Office meteorologist Clare Nasir said: ‘Thursday will dawn bright as you step outside.
Temperatures are expected to hit 68F in London and the south of England today as Britain finally sees an end to the downpour
Forecasters predict temperatures to stay above average for next two weeks with warm and sunny spells for much of the UK
‘It may be a bit chilly but it’s going to warm up very quickly and very nicely.’
Dangerous rise in global temperatures above limit set by UN could arrive by 2026, scientists warn
A dangerous rise in global temperatures above the 1.5C limit set by the UN could happen in just five years, warn scientists.
There is a 40 per cent chance that annual temperature rises will go beyond the level set by the 2015 Paris Agreement, agreed to by 196 countries, it is claimed.
The report published by the World Meteorological Organisation also warns of a very high likelihood – a 90 per cent chance – of at least one year between 2021 and 2025 becoming the warmest on record, outstripping 2016’s record heat.
Global average temperatures of 1.5C above 19th century levels are seen as a threshold beyond which the most dangerous impacts of climate change will be felt.
Scientists warn that temperature rises above 1.5C will lead to more heatwaves, extreme rainstorms, water shortages and drought, greater economic losses and lower crop yields, higher sea levels and destruction of coral reefs.
Some showers are expected to return Thursday evening and early on Friday morning before the warm weather returns just in time for the Bank Holiday weekend.
Next week, Brits can expect warm, settled conditions which are likely to persist across many areas from Monday. There is the potential for outbreaks of rain to arrive across parts of the northwest on Monday but it is then very uncertain how far south and east more unsettled conditions develop during next week.
While there is still likely to be a good deal of dry weather, showers, which could be heavy, become more likely across the south and west during the latter part of next week.
The Met Office predicts temperatures will most likely remain around or above average and by the end of the period, a northwest-southeast split in conditions becomes more probable.
Temperatures in London and the south are expected to stay above 68F over the next two weeks while there may be slightly cooler temperatures in the north.
Torrential downpours have led to the UK recording more than its average rainfall for May.
The UK has been gripped by persistent low pressure systems since the start of the month, with Wales and northern parts of England bearing the brunt of heavy rainfall and stormy conditions.
The Met Office said that up to Saturday the UK had seen 109.3mm of rainfall – 157 per cent of the long-term average for May.
This makes it the 10th wettest May on record, according to Met Office figures.
But meteorologist Dan Stroud said that the UK was unlikely to become the wettest May on record by surpassing the 131.7mm of rainfall in 1967.
Mr Stroud said: ‘We are into late May, early June, so there’s a fair amount of strength in the sun and it’s going to feel very pleasant in the sunshine.’