A yellow weather warning for rain has been issued for swathes of the UK and forecasters say up to 30mm will fall across northern England and northern Wales, with nearly a month’s worth falling in the worst affected areas.
Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle are among the cities covered by the warning, which is in force every day on Sunday. Residents of those cities have been warned of disruption to outdoor events.
It comes as millions of families are expected to take to the roads over the weekend for a day trip or holiday, according to the RAC.
Saturday was expected to be the year’s busiest day for travel after schools in England and Wales broke up for the summer holidays.
More than two million people will head overseas for a holiday this weekend, according to travel association Abta.
More than 35,000 flights took off on Friday, which was the busiest day for airline travel in Europe since 2019.
In the UK, rain is already falling in parts of the country, affecting England’s fourth Ashes Test against Australia in Manchester.
Golfers in the Open Championship in Liverpool, meanwhile, were battling through the dry conditions in the northwest.
Travel delays are also foreseen for those heading south, with the AA saying there were long waits on the A20 “due to people and lorries heading into Dover Port”.
The entire first two weeks of the holidays are set to be a washout across the UK, but there are signs that the second week of August could start to become more settled.
The UK is seeing poor weather due to the position of the jet stream – which is also pushing high pressure to the south where parts of Europe are seeing a heatwave.
Rachel Ayers, meteorologist at the Met Office, said: “At the moment it’s divided, we sit on the cold side of the jet to the north of it, we’ve got low pressure coming.
It can stay like this for quite a while as it has been for the last few weeks. It’s hard to say when it will all break down, it’s not looking like anything will soon.
“The heatwave is starting to ease a little in parts of Europe, but now the focus is moving to Italy and Greece away from Spain.”
She added: “Looking at a longer range, it will be cool and changeable, into the second week of August it could be a little more settled.
“But it doesn’t mean we’re not going to see any settled interludes in the meantime, on Tuesday we’ve got a nudge of high pressure which means showers will be less heavy and more isolated, so it’ll bring a more settled day.
“The overall picture for the next couple of weeks is mostly damp and no prolonged spells of settled weather or above average temperatures.”
The temperature will be changeable but likely below average over the coming weeks, the forecaster added.
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