It often seems that summer starts hot and sunny but by the time the main holiday period begins, the rain has set in … it is disappointing and frustrating that the weather doesn’t always live up to our hopes, as witnessed in the last couple of weeks.
So, when will summer come back? Well, if you have read some media reports, you may think that August – the last month of meteorological summer – will be dominated by hurricanes or continual deluges. Attention-grabbing headlines may attract interest but they don’t inform readers about what the rest of summer may have in store.
To understand what the rest of the month may hold, let’s look at the weather situation now. After some hot spells in June and early in July, the UK’s weather is currently being dominated by a series of low-pressure systems, steered our way by the jet stream, which is sitting across the UK at present, rather than being positioned further north. Sadly, this relocation of the jet stream has coincided with many people taking holidays in the UK.
Laura Paterson is a Chief Forecaster with the Met Office. She said: “During the summer we would hope that the jet stream might be positioned well to the north of the UK, which brings an increased chance of warm, sunny weather. However many years defy this hope and, as at present, we end up with the jet stream shifted further south, guiding low-pressure systems right across us, rather than steering them to the north of Scotland.”
Will this situation persist? Well, indications are that until the middle of next week the weather will remain changeable – although parts of the country may see some improvement over the weekend, particularly across the south on Sunday, when some sunnier, drier conditions are on the cards. A further improvement may come to pass later next week but this is still quite a long way off and so confidence levels aren’t too high. This is especially the case, since the improvement may be influenced by the remnants of tropical storm Emily – which may actually help to nudge the jet stream further north.
After that it’s difficult to give too many details, but it looks like the second half of August may bring finer weather than the first half, especially for southen parts of the UK. This means that most of us will see some sunshine, but there is still likely to be some rain and showers in the forecast.
With many people on holiday, tourists often wonder about the weather during their vacation. Andrew Stokes, VisitEngland’s Director said: “Whatever the weather there is an outstanding range of quality destinations and attractions on offer and with the ease and convenience of holidaying at home, Brits are discovering more of England and driving the economic benefits of tourism across the country.”
Alex Deakin is a presenter with the Met Office. He said: “To a fair extent the outlook for the rest of August depends upon your philosophical bent and whether your rain gauge is half full or half empty. Pessimists may see rain in the forecast and assume that it’s going to be a washout: optimists see brighter periods in the forecast and make the most of it. However, the reality is that during the unsettled periods there will be brighter spells, which, with the strength of the August sun, could feel very pleasant.
“Despite the headlines it is certainly not all doom and gloom, and whatever the weather, smart people use their smart phones and plan their days and activities around the up to date information from the Met Office weather app.”
You can keep up to date with the weather using our forecast pages and by following us on Twitter and Facebook, as well as using our new mobile app which is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from the Google Play store.