Summer’s “worst week of weather ” will see downpours, gales and cool temperatures blight the first seven days of school holidays.
Forecasters are warning of a damp start to August with high winds and heavy showers likely to continue for some time as the great summer getaway begins.
The UK Met Office forecast ‘exceptional’ rainfall during the evening with around a month’s worth of rain expected to fall in an hour in some areas with gusts of up to 50mph.
Government weathermen said tomorrow and Sunday will see most parts of the country experience heavy showers – thundery for some – with strong winds and showers on Monday and more wet conditions and gales from midweek, with most parts facing rain.
Forecasters predict “distinctly average” and “rather cool” 16-22C highs until well into next week – down close to 10C in parts after 27C earlier in the week.
The Weather Outlook said the coming week will be the “worst week of weather” so far this summer after early-summer sizzles – as holidaying children face being “stuck indoors.”
Temperatures will rise to around 25C on Tuesday and Wednesday when a ridge of high pressure draws fine, sunny conditions across Britain with the best of the weather in the south and east.
It will stay a little cooler in the north-west but temperatures will still hover around 20C.
From Thursday, it will be windy at times with the risk of gales across the north, and often rather cool, especially in the west.
This changeable weather is likely to continue into the start of August, especially in the north.
Met Office forecaster Charlie Powell said: “The wet, windy and showery weather is the opposite of the dry conditions we’ve been used to recently.
“Temperatures are distinctly average for the start of school holidays. It’s not beach weather for some.”
The weather does not just threaten to disrupt holiday plans but there is also a rampant wasp population.
Millions more wasps are buzzing around the UK than in the last five years because a mild winter and sunshine has led to an increase in caterpillars and aphids, and nowhere will be worse hit than Southern England.
Pest controllers have been receiving around 100 calls a week to remove wasp nests from homes.
Shane Jones, 48, clears nests in Basingstoke and Hampshire with his son Reef, 18 said: “We have been doing this for five years and it is the best year for a while.
“We were already getting wasp calls in May this year and during the start of June we were very busy.
“We are getting somewhere between five and 15 calls a day at the moment, when it is raining it’s a bit quieter but as soon as the sun comes out people go outside and sit in their garden and crack open a can of beer and they look up at their house and realise they have a wasp nest.”
Wasps feast on leftover foods from bins as well as aphids, caterpillars and other insects but colonies die from starvation during the winter months.
Only the queen, which has an average lifespan of 12 months, survives the winter before laying eggs which grow into adult worker wasps.
Shane added: “The wasps have been hibernating through the winter and when the Queen wakes up and the weather is poor there may not be enough food around, but this year we have had hot weather so more survive.
“If you have a poor insect population then the wasp rate is low, but because there has been more food around for them so a lot more have survived.”