June bodes ill for hayfever sufferers

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A dull May is set to turn into sneezing June for hayfever sufferers as experts predict a "severe" grass-pollen season.

A sunny weather forecast for the bank holiday weekend is set to release clouds of pollen as temperatures rise. The Pollen Research Unit in Worcester said current low levels of pollen, which have varied between zero and 30 grains per cubic metre of air, are set to rise sharply next week to 50 or over, and are expected to peak in early June. Figures above 50 are classified as high. The problems faced by sufferers have been compounded this year by warnings that some over-the-counter remedies may cause potentially serious heart problems in a small number of cases. The drugs affected are the non-sedating anti-histamines terfenadine, loratadine and astemizole. Jeremy Laurance