Defiant Britons braved beer gardens today despite the country being hit by 60mph winds and five inches of rain in 18 hours on a washout Saturday – but conditions will improve tomorrow for those hoping to sit outdoors.
People still managed to enjoy a meal or drink outdoors at restaurants and pubs despite the damp and windswept conditions, after a deep low pressure system swept in overnight and brought unsettled but milder weather.
Temperatures were set to reach 64F (18C) in South East England this afternoon, although it felt colder because of the adverse conditions – and some parts of Scotland were only forecast to make it up to 45F (7C).
Strong gusts and rain moved north-east through the day with the worst of it expected over South Wales, nine days before indoor hospitality reopens in England from its shutdown on May 17 following the third Covid-19 lockdown.
However, better weather is expected in southern England tomorrow which will turn warm during sunny spells with highs of up to 73F (23C), despite heavy and thundery showers in the North with more isolated rain elsewhere.
A group of women enjoy a wet and windy birthday celebration in Sunderland this afternoon despite the adverse weather
A man and woman brave the rain as they enjoy a drink in Sheffield city centre today despite the wet weather
A woman smiles as she braves the rain in Sheffield city centre today to enjoy a drink amid the downpours
A group of men enjoy a drink together outside a pub in Borough Market in London today on what is a rainy weekend
The wind and rain fail to stop locals enjoying a drink in Sunderland this afternoon as the North East faces wet weather
Two people enjoy an afternoon drink in Sunderland today as the adverse weather hits much of England this weekend
Groups of people sit outside at Borough Market today as they try to make the most of their Saturday despite the rain
Early rain across Wales, South West England and northern parts is expected to track eastwards during tomorrow and will turn increasingly light and patchy before clearing during the afternoon.
In Greater Manchester this afternoon, kick-off in the Sky Bet League Two football clash between play-off-chasing Salford City FC and Leyton Orient was delayed by one hour until 4pm due to the very wet weather.
Meanwhile the Environment Agency had two flood alerts in place for England today – one for the River Sow and River Penk in Stafford, and the other covering the River Burn from Waterden to Burnham Thorpe in Norfolk.
The Met Office said parts of the Brecon Beacons in South Wales could see 5in (125mm) of rain between 6am today and midnight tonight, while BBC Weather said wind gusts in County Antrim reached 59mph this morning.
The Met Office said parts of the Brecon Beacons in South Wales could see 5in (125mm) of rain between 6am and midnight
People walk past shops in the South Wales town of Porthcawl this afternoon during a heavy downpour
A man walks on waterlogged ground on Wimbledon Common in South West London today during a very wet day in the capital
Couples walk through Cambridge today where umbrellas are needed as the city is hit by very wet conditions
People walk past a florist as they pull their hoods over their heads in Porthcawl, South Wales, during a heavy downpour today
People walk in the rain in Porthcawl today as South Wales experiences the worst of the wet conditions
A group go punting on the River Cam in Cambridge today with umbrellas in hand to keep them dry from the rain showers
A joggers runs amid the wet conditions this morning on Wimbledon Common in South West London
A man walks past the shops in Porthcawl, South Wales, this afternoon under an umbrella during a heavy downpour
People walk through Borough Market in London today on a rainy Saturday ahead of the reopening of pubs indoors on May 17
A group of women wear face masks as they walk through Borough Market in London today on a rainy Saturday
A woman looks at the bread on offer at Borough Market in London today during what is a rainy Saturday
Met Office meteorologist Marco Petagna tweeted today: ‘Unsettled this weekend, yes, but temperatures becoming more respectable too. Could see local 19C in South East later today and perhaps 22C or 23C tomorrow.’
But tomorrow is very unlikely to be the warmest day of the year so far – with the current 2021 high of 76.1F (24.5C) set on March 30 at Kew Gardens in London, which was the hottest temperature for the month in 53 years.
The mercury failed to get near those highs last month in what was the frostiest April for at least 60 years. Britain’s hottest ever temperature in May was 91F (32.8C), which was recorded both in 1922 and 1944.
As for next week, Monday will bring bright spells and scattered showers, some locally heavy and thundery in the afternoon and evening. It will be bright on Tuesday with sunshine but patchy cloud will build along with showers.