Met Office gives verdict following '50 days of summer rain' reports

Reports had suggested a summer of scenes like this
-Credit: (Image: Sean Hansford | Manchester Evening News)


The Met Office has spoken out following reports that Brits could be braced for '50 days of rain' in a miserably wet summer. It has been widely reported that the forecaster had warned the Government to prepare for wet conditions over the coming months - with at least 50 days of 2.5mm or more rainfall.

But speaking to the Manchester Evening News, the Met Office insists the reports are wide of the mark. It says it is not possible to forecast a specific number of days of rain for the whole of summer.

And while it's too soon for accurate forecasts for the coming months, 'signals for prevailing weather patterns' currently show that the chances of a wet or dry summer are currently 'fairly balanced'. A Met Office spokesperson said: "When looking at forecasts beyond five days into the future, the chaotic nature of the atmosphere starts to come into play.

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"Small events currently over the Atlantic can have potentially significant impacts on our weather in the UK in several days' or weeks’ time. Therefore, whilst we can still forecast the general feel of the weather to a relatively high level of accuracy using our ensemble models, it becomes harder to offer local detail to as high a level of accuracy as our shorter range forecasts.

"For this reason longer range forecast tend to be for the average conditions over the UK as a whole. Regional deviations from the UK average can occur."

Prospects of a dry summer are still in the balance, the Met Office says
Prospects of a dry summer are still in the balance, the Met Office says -Credit:Adam Vaughan

The Met Office adds that some spells of unsettled weather can be expected in the coming weeks, which are typical for this time of year. This could include downpours and thunderstorms, similar to those seen over the bank holiday weekend in Manchester.

Currently, the Met Office long-range forecast runs until June 26. It says that early June is likely to see more settled conditions due to the influence of high pressure, before a more uncertain outlook in the second week of the month.

"The south of the UK will probably be drier, although not ruling out scattered showers at times," it says. "Cooler and cloudier further northwest, where rain is more likely. Temperatures will probably be around normal or a little above average."

From June 12 to 26, the Met Office says current indications show chances of high or low pressure affecting the UK's weather are 'fairly balanced', adding: "There is no strong signal for either dry or wet conditions being the more prominent feature of the weather. On balance, it is probable that a continuation of variable, slow moving weather patterns are likely through much of June, similar to that which has been experienced through May.

"However, with potentially slow moving weather systems there is still a chance that longer-lived drier, or even wetter, spells are entirely possible too. Temperatures are most likely to be around or above normal."