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UK weather: When will it finally get better? Forecasters reveal ‘early signs’ of warmer conditions on the way

Written by on 18 May 2021

As the UK has gradually moved out of lockdown, most of the country’s enjoyment of new-found freedoms has been quite literally dampened by weeks of miserable conditions.

After a dry but colder-than-average April, the first half of May saw 77% of the average total rainfall for the entire month, with temperatures of around three degrees below normal.

So as people across Britain continue to shiver at windswept tourist attractions and in rain-soaked beer gardens – before finally being allowed inside as of Monday – when can we reasonably expect a semblance of summer weather to arrive?

A light dusting of snow covers the outdoor seating area at the Queens Head in Cullercoats, on the North East coast, as the pub prepares to reopen its outdoor area Image: A light dusting of snow greeted some drinkers as beer gardens reopened in April

Meteorologists say the positioning of the jet stream to the south of the UK has been causing the colder and wetter weather this spring, at a time of the year when it has normally moved to the north of the country, bringing more settled conditions.

But Met Office spokesman Oli Claydon told Sky News that while wind, rain and cooler temperatures would persist in many parts for much of the next seven days or so, there were indications things should start to improve next week.

“Things should actually be a bit warmer in some places over the next couple of days, with temperatures of up to 17C (63F) in the southeast of England,” he said.

“After that, we likely to a return to showery conditions across the country and we’ll have quite a wet and windy Thursday and Friday.

“However, there are some early signs that we could see some higher pressure move in towards the middle of next week, which should bring some drier and warmer weather with it.

“Although there remains some uncertainty, we can expect that things should become increasingly settled as we get to the end of May and beginning of June.”

Storm clouds roll in over the beach at Tynemouth earlier in May Image: Storm clouds roll in over the beach at Tynemouth earlier in May

Forecasters say conditions should be closer to normal by that stage, with the average June temperature 17.3C (63.1F) for the UK as a whole – but up to 19.3C (66.7F) for the South East, the country’s warmest region.

Mr Claydon said the weather so far this month had contrasted sharply with the record sunshine of May last year.

“Last year was a stand-out in terms of weather at this time of year, which will make it seem even worse now,” he added.

“We’ve got a bit more unsettled weather to come over the next week, but things should start to look up after that.”