23 Aug 2013

Bank holiday weather: a soaking start but getting better

In my blog a few days ago, I explained how there was a great deal of uncertainty in the weather the bank holiday weekend.

Now that we are closer, the detail is a little clearer, but the level of confidence in the forecast is disappointingly low, given that it is just 24 hours away.

The complication this weekend is that the air at the surface over the UK is going to be very warm and humid – meaning that there’s a decent reservoir of potential energy and moisture for some heavy downpours.

Marlborough Downs, Wiltshire, UK

However, for this potential energy to be released, an upper trough – a weather pattern 30,000ft up – needs to be in the right place at the right time. It’s the exact position of this upper trough that is in question – hence the uncertainty about the forecast.

Despite the precise detail still being open to some doubt, the various weather computer models are now all showing the same general trend. Saturday will be the wettest day, with improvements through Sunday and Monday.


This looks like the wettest day of the bank holiday weekend for the greatest number of people. A slow moving weather front will bring heavy and thundery bursts of rain across Scotland and much of central and eastern England, with a risk of localised flooding.

Wales, Northern Ireland and the far west of England will have some occasional sunshine, although even here, there’s likely to be the threat of some showers later in the day.


There’s still a risk of some heavy showers across East Anglia and south east England for a time, accompanied by a noticeable breeze.

Elsewhere, it should be a much brighter day with longer spells of sunshine and fewer showers.


barmouth_water_g_wpFor much of the UK, this will be the best day of the bank holiday, with spells of sunshine and temperatures generally 20-25C.

However, Scotland and Northern Ireland will turn cloudier later in the day, with some rain arriving in north western areas by evening. The cloudier areas will be cooler, with temperatures around 16-20C.

With some uncertainty, it’s worth keeping an eye on the Channel 4 Weather website in the coming days. I’ll also be posting occasional updates on Twitter – @liamdutton

Tweets by @liamdutton