Summer is finally set to arrive next week with a scorching heatwave – but only after a stormy weekend.
Temperatures are set to soar to 28C from Wednesday (August 9) thanks to a plume from the Azores in Portugal.
But forecasters are warning of a weekend washout first with thunderstorms, monster gales and downpours for most of the nation on Saturday (August 5).
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And the Met Office has named the first storm of 2023 Antoni which will see 65pmh winds batter the coasts.
Met Office spokesperson Nicola Maxey said in England and Wales the high wind speeds were the “greater concern” and could be “quite impactful” for holidaymakers camping and caravanning near the seaside.
She added: “The low pressure system is pushing off across from the Atlantic.
“So, it’s pushing into the west side of the UK crossing, say, from the Atlantic pushing out towards the east side as we go through Saturday and clearing by the time we reach Sunday.
“Sunday’s likely to be a more showery day, not so much sunshine, there is a chance there could be some sunshine for the South and South West and in that sunshine, it’ll feel warmer, but still showers around.”
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Meanwhile a yellow rain warning is in place across Northern Ireland on Saturday until midday.
But scorching temperatures could return next week, according to the NetWeather firm.
Weather maps suggest the mercury in the UK will peak at 28C in London but will hover around the mid-to-high twenties in the rest of England and Wales.
Scotland and Northern Ireland look set for cooler conditions as temperatures range from 10C to 20C.
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Elsewhere, The RAC’s Rod Dennis warned that Saturday (August 5) is expected to be the worst day on the roads of the summer.
He said: “Conditions will be atrocious with a wholly unpleasant mix of very strong winds and locally intense rainfall.
“The best advice is to slow down significantly to stay safe and avoid exposed moorland and coastal routes until the storm passes.
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“Drivers towing caravans and trailers need to be particularly careful in these conditions and those with boxes and bikes on the roof should double-check they’re secured properly.
“Drivers should also watch out for fallen trees and be prepared for the disruption they cause.”
It comes after the UK had its sixth wettest July on record last month.
And the start of August has been a damp squib with north-east England hit by around an inch of downpours on Wednesday, while areas in London saw around three quarters of an inch of rain.
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