Met Office responds to '50 days of summer rain' reports

We’ve all been counting down the days until sunny beer gardens and BBQs, but a recent announcement seemed to dash our hopes for summer.

Reports of a Met Office briefing warning the UK could be hit by up to 50 days of rain over the next three months had many people dreading a washout season. So many days of rain would have made summer 2024 the wettest summer recorded since 1912.

However, despite fears of the wettest summer in a century, the Met Office spoke out and said that is it too early to tell.

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Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, the Met Office noted the difficulties in predicting long-term weather accurately and said that while a rainy summer is always a possibility, this is not set in stone.

The forecasting body added that it is not possible to forecast a specific number of days of rain for the whole of summer.

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.

"Small events currently over the Atlantic can have potentially significant impacts on our weather in the UK in several days or weeks. 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 forecasts tend to be for the average conditions over the UK as a whole. Regional deviations from the UK average can occur."

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.

It said: "The south of the UK will probably be drier, although not ruling out scattered showers at times.

"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 is 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."

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