Thunderstorms and heavy rain set to hit parts of the UK

Torrential rain and thunderstorms are set to bring flooding and travel disruption across much of the UK.

A yellow warning for storms has been issued for parts of north-west England, Yorkshire, the East Midlands and East Anglia between 2pm and 7pm on Tuesday, while a separate warning covering Northumberland, Cumbria and southern Scotland is in place from 3pm until midnight.

Parts of Northern Ireland are also covered by a yellow warning between noon and 9pm.

Forecasters are warning up to 1.2in (30mm) of rain could fall in just a few hours in places, while lightning, hail and strong winds could cause damage to buildings.

There is also a chance of delays and cancellations to train and bus services.

Met Office spokesman Stephen Dixon said: “The UK is in the midst of some unsettled weather at the moment.

“It will be a little bit hit and miss within warning areas, some lightning strikes and travel disruptions lend an unsettled feel for today (Tuesday).”

Particularly heavy downpours in some areas could see roads cut off.

Temperatures are expected to reach highs of 20C in central England on Tuesday, with a low of 5C expected in rural Scotland.

On Wednesday, highs of 21C are expected in the South East of England.

A further yellow warning for thunderstorms comes into force in Scotland at 10am on Wednesday and is in place until 7pm.

It covers cities including Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee, with forecasters warning of up to 20mm of rain in less than an hour.

Mr Dixon said: “The thundery risk spreads further north on Wednesday, with a warning in force for much of Scotland. Further south will see a continued mix of sunshine and showers for many.

“That showery theme, with the potential for some heavier bursts, continues for much of the country on Thursday, though there is also likely to be some sunny spells at times, which could feel quite pleasant away from the rain.

“There is a change signalled for the weekend, with a ridge of high pressure likely to reduce rainfall totals and bring some warm, dry weather for many, though details will become clearer in the coming days.”