BBC Weather: Thundery rain showers forecast for UK
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The Met Office said this morning (Sunday) that thunderstorms out in the English Channel were moving northwards towards the south coast of England, with heavy rain and potentially hail expected across Dorset and Hampshire. The unsettled weather conditions suggest temperatures might not reach record-breaking levels today, as had been hoped.
Meteorologists had predicted that 24 degrees Celsius could be recorded at 1pm this afternoon – the hottest so far this year.
However, the Met Office’s revised estimate puts central London at a milder 22 degrees.
Netweather, meanwhile, predicts highs of 23 degrees for Sunday at around 6pm.
Forecasters still predict that things will heat up over Monday and Tuesday, with the latter reaching 27 degrees, according to the Met Office.
Previous estimates have put Tuesday’s temperature as high as 26 degrees – meaning Tuesday is likely to smash the record for the hottest day on record so far.
The stormy conditions won’t be the last of the wet weather, as forecasters expect patchy rain to create humid conditions that will make it feel hotter.
Netweather said yesterday (Saturday) that humidity and wind conditions could make things feel more like 28 degrees on Tuesday.
Despite a warm feel to Sunday, there will be the outbreak of thunderstorms in parts of the UK into the evening.
Nick Finnis, senior forecaster at Netweather, explained: “The models have been indicating the potential for some heavy showers or even some thunderstorms to move up from the south across parts of England and Wales over the weekend.
“Although high pressure will bring a fine end to the week across the south and brings more widespread fine weather on Saturday, as the high drifts north across the UK, the high will retreat far enough northeast by Sunday to allow an amplifying upper trough over the Atlantic to make further inroads towards the UK from the west.”
He added that this would allow an “elevated plume” of “warm and moist air” to reach southern England by Sunday.
Mr Finnis continued: “Showers and perhaps some thunderstorms are forecast to develop along the ‘nose’ of the plume as it moves up across southern England Saturday night, though there is still some uncertainty to the extent of destabilisation on the northwest side of the plume across northern France, English Channel and southern England.”
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He said that “poor agreement” between weather models meant that pinpointing where thunderstorms may hit “may not be apparent until nearer the time”.
This morning, the Met Office announced it had put in place a yellow thunderstorm warning for a vast swathe of southern England and Wales from 8pm this evening into 5am tomorrow.
It said that there was a “small chance that homes and businesses could be flooded quickly, with damage to some buildings from floodwater, lightning strikes or hail”.
There will be a “continued risk” of thunderstorms and downpours through Sunday and into Monday as “warm and moist” air makes its way across England and Wales, Mr Finnis said.
He added: “In fact, much of next week may see further spells of heavy thundery rain and thunderstorms spreading north at times.”
While some parts of the UK may see harsh downpours, a portion of England and Wales will get “welcome rain for some gardens”.
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