Parts of Britain are set to experience hail, thunder and winds of up to 65mph on Friday as Storm Alex makes landfall in southern England and the Channel Islands.
On Thursday, most of the UK will enjoy sunny spells and the odd shower, but there will be heavier rain in northern Scotland and a risk of hail and thunder in Wales.
Temperatures will struggle to reach highs of 16C, on what will largely be a fairly chilly day.
The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for wind and rain throughout Friday until 8pm, spreading along the south coast from Cornwall to Hastings.
The government forecasters warn that flooding of homes and businesses in urban areas is likely, with up to 50mm of rain expected, while some coastal communities are set to be affected by spray and large waves.
Travel disruption in England’s south is also likely, the Met Office said, warning motorists and passengers on trains, ferries and planes could experience difficulties, particularly in the morning rush hour.
Meteo-France has named Storm Alex, a deep area of low pressure, which will generate well over half a month’s rainfall and some very strong winds of between 45 and 65mph.
“That’s enough that we could see some trees being blown down, particularly at this time of year when they can still have a lot of leaves," said Met Office meteorologist Alex Burkill. “So with the heavy rain wetting the ground and the strong winds, that’s likely to cause some localised impacts.”
While the storm’s effects will be felt keenly across southern England, eventually reaching Sheffield and Liverpool on Friday afternoon, the Channel Islands will bear the brunt of it as it passes over northwestern France.
Meanwhile, other parts of the country will enjoy clearer skies, with patches of frost in the morning and lingering fog. “It’s not too bad a day, really," Mr Burkill said. “It’s going to be mostly dry with lengthy sunny spells … on the whole a very different picture.”
Looking ahead to the weekend, the only glimmer of hope is the opportunity for schadenfreude in the south, as the rest of the country is hit by similar levels of wind and rain.
An “intense front” is set to hit from the southeast on Saturday morning, meaning “everywhere is going to have a very wet day, though there will be some dry periods amongst it”, Mr Burkill said.
The unsettled weather will continue on Sunday, with low pressure across the UK bringing persistent rain across many parts of the UK.
While there are no weather warnings issued yet, Mr Burkill said this may change as meteorologists assess the impending weather front in the coming days.