Extreme weather in UK with storms and April hail showers set to batter Britain

Gaby Leslie

The UK is set to experience heavy rain and hail storms today, with thunder and lightning mixed in too, weathermen have warned.

The North and West will be hit by the worst of the weather, with 5-10mm of rain predicted to fall.

After last week’s snow blizzards, Thursday and Friday will bring typical unstable April weather with sunny spells in between.

Light winds will mean that showers will be generally slow-moving and prolonged with temperatures slightly below average for this time of year.

Showers across Scotland are expected to fall as snow on the mountain tops.

If conditions remain unstable in the atmosphere, there is a risk of funnel clouds extending from thunderstorms.

Should the conditions be just right and the funnel clouds reach ground level and rotate, there is a risk of tornadoes developing.

On Wednesday, the ground turned white in Hampshire and in some parts of the North East as 1cm-sized hail stones fell from the sky.

[Related story: Golf ball-sized hailstones kill three people]

There were reports of locals mistaking the hail for snow on roads.

The topsy turvy weather follows a miserable wash-out Easter weekend and is a far cry from last April’s heatwave which was the warmest for 100 years.

And this year’s unusually warm March weather is now just a distant memory.

Sky News weather producer Joanna Robinson said: “There will be some heavy rain about this week, but it will be localised, so it will be hit and miss depending on where you are.

“It is going to be a week of sunshine and showers. Some areas will get a lot of rain and some areas will see none at all, so you may see a deluge of rain, but you may avoid the rain altogether.

 “The showers are generally more frequent towards the North and the West.

[Related link: Check your local five-day forecast]

“The areas that really do need the rain, such as the South and the South East, will see fewer showers, with more places staying dry.”

While the weather will stay wet for the rest of the week, the Meteogroup warned that there will be nowhere near enough rain to alleviate current drought conditions.

Over the weekend temperatures will take a tumble again with the risk of hill snow and wintry showers along the East coast as winds from the Arctic sweep across the UK.

As temperatures struggle to get above freezing there will be a sharp frosts, especially in rural spots where temperatures could get down to -4C.

Let’s just hope this old saying comes true: “March winds and April showers bring forth May flowers.”