New maps show exact day Europes sweltering plume will reach UK

UK weather: Met Office forecasts sunshine and showers

A warm snap is poised to reach the UK in May as the Met Office confirms it will be “much warmer than average” for the first bank holiday weekend of the month. New weather maps show the potential for hot African air to travel up through the continent, touching the tip of Britain, mainly the south east, during the first week of next month. 

It comes as Spain prepares for temperatures to hit a blistering 40C this week, with it being days before the hot air actually reaches Britain. Dubbed an early heatwave, maps have turned bright red and authorities are poised for a record-breaking few days.

Back in the UK, temperatures could reach 18C on Sunday, soaring to just shy of 20C just days later. But according to forecasters, temperatures could even exceed this, reaching 22C.

And meteorologists said there is likely to be clear skies and a 20C warm spell for the King’s Coronation weekend – starting May 6.

Looking further ahead, rain is then expected in mid-May, before two further heat pulses and 26C highs expected later in the month. The Met Office backed warm spells above May’s average high of 18.5C in the south.

Temperatures have reached at least 26C by mid-May in all but one of the past five years, Met Office records show. A Met Office forecaster said: “After cold northerly winds, showery conditions are expected to become drier in southern parts later in the coming weekend.

“Then the rest of the period to May 6 is likely to be predominantly dry. Temperatures will increase to slightly above average.”

Weather Outlook forecaster Brian Gaze said: “Computer forecasts are turning up the thermostat later in the week ahead, with 20C shown. Could it feel like summer? Very warm air isn’t far away to the south of the UK.”

In Spain, record breaking temperatures are expected this Wednesday and Friday with temperatures reaching levels typically seen in July.

Reservoirs are around 15 percent below average levels with some shrinking to just 26 percent of capacity, while the dry conditions are raising fears about the outbreak of more wildfires with summer approaching.

Spain’s state meteorological agency Aemet said there will be a “progressive entry of a very warm and dry air mass of African origin” causing “values typical of summer”.

The UK is likely to feel the effects of this later on, with high temperatures expected throughout May.  The Met Office three-month outlook predicts hotter than normal temperatures are a 50 percent probability, commenting: “May has an increased likelihood of high pressure having a greater influence than normal.

“This favours drier and warmer than average conditions.”

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