We are currently trialling our new-look independent.co.uk website - please send any feedback to beta@independent.co.uk


Is spring finally here? UK set for weekend warmth with temperatures set to rise

Mercury could hit 20C on Sunday but showers are also expected

An end to weeks of cold weather is in sight with much of the UK expected to see warmer temperatures over the weekend, with figures approaching 20C in some areas on Sunday.

However, thoughts of barbecues will probably have to be put on hold with the jump in temperatures being accompanied by showers and breezy conditions across several regions.

The reason for the change is that the cold easterly winds that the UK has faced throughout March, bringing the cold weather, have been replaced with milder south westerly winds coming in from the Atlantic. However Helen Chivers, a Met Office forecaster, says that nobody should expect “glorious sunshine” to go with the higher temperatures, as the winds from the Atlantic also normally bring rain and blustery conditions.

“While it will be warmer than average in some places over the weekend, particularly in East Anglia, which will see the best of the brightest on Sunday, and the south east, there will still be rain around.”  

Today will see sunny spells mixed with scattered showers in much of the southern half of the UK, with heavy rainfall moving from East Anglia into the south east during the afternoon bringing a risk of thunder.  Temperatures will be around the average for this time of year, between 9C and 11C. Elsewhere will be colder and cloudier, with a chance of rain across much of the Midlands, the north of England and Scotland.

Overnight these showers will mostly dry out, leaving Saturday dry across the majority of the UK, but with a patchy frost in places. Saturday will begin with a colder start but temperatures are set to climb to between 9C and 12C. Showers are expected in south west England then pushing northeast through the day, while the wind will pick up, with gales in the north and west.

Sunday will see temperatures climb to between 13C and 15C across much of the UK, with Scotland, Wales and areas of the north west of England feeling a little cooler. The north and the west will also see rain for a time, but it will be drier and brighter elsewhere. It will feel particularly warm in the sunshine, with potential highs of 19C in East Anglia and 18C in London, with averages around 16C to 17C, although breezy conditions are expected.

The changeable weather is expected to continue into next week, with temperatures around the low to mid-teens and breezy conditions. Ms Chivers expects “all of us to see some sun on Monday”, but it will be mixed with showers moving into Tuesday.