Storm warning as temperatures rise

Blackpool's famous donkeys may need scuba gear this weekend...
Blackpool's famous donkeys may need scuba gear this weekend...
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A powerful summer storm is threatening to bring flooding to parts of the North West this weekend, the Met Office says.

Severe weather alerts have been issued for rain covering most of England and Wales on Saturday.

Torrential downpours, lightning, hail and strong gusts could sweep in a day after temperatures are forecast to reach the 30C mark, with Friday being tipped to be the hottest day of the year so far.

Yellow “be aware” alerts for rain have been put in place for numerous areas including the North West.

The Met Office said: “Areas of heavy, thundery showers may develop over England and Wales from early on Saturday before moving northwards during the day.

“The development of these is uncertain but where they do form some torrential downpours are possible with frequent lightning, hail and locally strong gusts.

“Significant flooding is possible where these do happen from surface water as well as small, fast responding watercourses.

“The frequent lightning, hail and strong gusts could also be an additional hazard. The public should be aware of the risk of disruption from any of these elements.”

Met Office forecaster Helen Roberts said most places in England and Wales will feel hot and humid, with temperatures generally around or higher than the 25C (77F) mark.

“Most people won’t enjoy these conditions,” said Ms Roberts. “It can be difficult sleeping during the hot humid nights.

“Although it probably is shorts and T-shirt weather, you will need a brolly at the same time.”