Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

Don’t bother going abroad! Britain will be hotter than Saint-Tropez, Ibiza and Crete from Thursday with 22C blast after wet end to May bank holiday

  • Mild but dreary Bank Holiday Monday today amid cloudy skies and showers and 18C (64F) highs in England
  • Forecasters say today ‘will not be a scorcher but it will not be a washout’, with rain most likely in the West
  • Met Office meteorologist says he is ‘fairly optimistic we can see sun punch some holes’ through the cloud
  • But conditions are set to improve later this week, with sunshine and 22C (72F) highs from this Thursday 

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After a mild but dreary Bank Holiday Monday today for much of Britain, weather conditions are set to improve with sunshine and 22C (72F) highs later this week – putting the country on a par with European holiday spots.

Forecasters said today ‘will not be a scorcher but it will not be a washout’ with temperatures of up to 18C (64F) in England and 16C (61F) in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland – and rain most likely in western areas.

But things will warm up later this week with parts of South East England set to reach 21C (70F) or 22C (72F) – making the country warmer than Saint-Tropez (20C/68F), Ibiza (19C/66F) and Crete (20C/68F) on Thursday. 

Today will bring a mostly dry and bright morning for many parts with some spells of sunshine, but fair-weather cloud and showers will then develop throughout the day along with a gentle breeze in coastal areas.

A miserable wet and grey Bank Holiday Monday on Tynemouth Longsands in North Tyneside this morning

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

A paddleboarder in the water on a grey Bank Holiday Monday on Tynemouth Longsands in North Tyneside this morning

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

People walk along Tynemouth Longsands in North Tyneside this morning amid the dreary conditions

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

Paddleboarders go into the water on Bank Holiday Monday on Tynemouth Longsands in North Tyneside today

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

A miserable wet and grey Bank Holiday Monday on Tynemouth Longsands in North Tyneside this morning

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

Families and visitors enjoy an afternoon on the beach at Lyme Regis in Dorset today despite the overcast weather

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

People sit outside on the seafront at Lyme Regis in Dorset today despite the gloomy weather conditions

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

People sit on the pebbled beach at Lyme Regis in Dorset today amid the overcast weather conditions

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

Families and visitors enjoy an afternoon on the beach at Lyme Regis in Dorset today despite the overcast weather

Met Office meteorologist Craig Snell said there will be a fair amount of cloud around today – but he was ‘fairly optimistic we can see the sun punch some holes through that cloud’, although there may also be showers.

Rain and cloud from the daytime will then linger through tonight, although most rain will clear by the early hours of tomorrow morning, with some heavier spells remaining in the North of England and parts of Scotland.

Tomorrow will be another very cloudy day, and there will be a wet start across the UK with some sunnier spells in the South West. It will then turn wetter and cloudier during the day, with the driest conditions in eastern areas.

Wednesday will be a day of some sunshine but heavy showers and rain, with the chance of some thundery spells in the South, and there will be moderate winds in central areas but lighter gusts elsewhere.

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

People go out punting on the River Cam in Cambridge today on what has been an overcast day for many areas 

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

Punters on the River Cam in Cambridge today as people enjoy a day out on Bank Holiday Monday

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

Punting on the River Cam in Cambridge today as people enjoy the conditions despite it being overcast in many areas today

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

A cyclist riding on a bright morning past the flowering bluebells on Wimbledon Common in South West London today

Britain is hit by Bank Holiday showers before 21C this Thursday

The Met Office said UV levels will be moderate across the UK today, and tree pollen counts will be high across many areas

Sunset by North Pier in Blackpool, Lancashire, yesterday evening ahead of warmer weather being forecast for later this week

Conditions will then begin to improve from Thursday which will be a drier and sunnier day, especially for the south. Highs of 21C (70F) or 22C (72F) are expected on this day in the South East, as well as on Friday.

The Met Office’s Simon Partridge added: ‘This week is a funny old one, there’s a fair bit of rain and cloud around as well as sunny spells, with many areas gradually warming up until Thursday which should be the warmest day,

‘Between Monday and Wednesday temperatures will sit in the high teens and low 20s in Wales and central and southern parts of the England, while eastern Scotland could reach 19C (66F).

‘But in parts of Northern Ireland, northern England and Scotland there will be cloud and some scattered showers.

‘Thursday will see high teens quite widely across the country, parts of the South East will rise as high as 21C (70F), with an outside chance of 22C (72F) in areas where there is more sunshine.

‘So there’s a warm spell in store for many but don’t expect the wall-to-wall sunshine and blue skies we saw in April.’

The outlook for this weekend is also promising with sunshine and similar highs expected – although not to the levels of the hottest day of 2022 so far which was Good Friday, April 15, when London reached 23.4C (74.12F).

The top UK temperature yesterday was 17.8C (64F) at Aboyne in Aberdeenshire, while the low was 3.2C (37.8F) at Aviemore. On Saturday, the high was 18.7C (65.7F) in London and the low was -3.3C (26.1F) in Benson, Oxfordshire.

The forecast comes after last month was the latest in the string of dry Aprils, with rainfall about 35 per cent lower than average, according to the Met Office.