Temperatures are set to soar high enough to melt roads
Temperatures will soar through today with highs of 30C (86F) possible in parts of the country.
Millions will head out to Britain’s parks and beaches to soak up the rays while supermarkets are braced for a shopping frenzy.
Marks and Spencer is getting ready for the first “barbecue weekend” of the year as Britons stock up on party food and drinks.
It expects sales of sausages and burgers to soar 56 per cent on last year as ice creams, frozen yoghurt and salads fly off the shelves.
A spokesman said: “With temperatures set to hit the high 20Cs, we’re predicting this to be the first official barbecue weekend of the year so far.
“We know our customers have been itching to dust off their barbecues and picnic mats, so we are stocking up our shelves with delicious burgers, sausages and picnic treats to ensure we keep up with demand.”
The Met Office predicts temperatures will hit the high 20Cs today with 30C (86F) possible in parts.
A softer surface will affect the grip of the tyres
Forecaster Oli Claydon warned extreme heat and humidity will trigger thundery and torrential downpours in the coming days.
He said: “It is going to be very warm and muggy on Saturday with showers in the north although there will be fair amounts of clear, bright weather around.
“We expect maximum temperatures of 27C (80.6F) in the north with the south at getting up to 29C (84.2F) possibly 30C (86F) in parts – slightly down on earlier predictions.
Millions of Brits will dust of their barbecues this bank holiday weekend
“Sunday will be fresher although still bright, clear and largely dry before the potential for some torrential downpours during the early hours of Monday.
“These will include outbreaks of thunder and lightning and although some downturns will be heavy they are unlikely to lead to accumulation.
“Into next week and temperatures are still up on the average for the time of year with fair amounts of fine weather around.”
Motoring groups have warned to expect heavy traffic with hot weather likely to cause road surfaces to soften.
Mark Shankland, managing director of AA Tyres, said: “With the mercury peaking at a scorching 30C in some parts of the UK drivers should be especially cautious when heading out on the roads.
“Roads start to soften around 27C and as tarmac is a darker surface, it retains the heat better.
“This can lead to the asphalt warping, causing bulges and cracks to appear in the road.
Temperatures could reach 30C on Monday
“A softer surface will affect the grip of the tyres and your braking, which will impact your stopping distances and the quality of your drive.”
Bernard Donoghue, director of the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions, said this weekend is should be one of the busiest of the year so far.
He said people wanting to escape the heat should heat to Britain’s museums and galleries which are quiet during hot weather.
He said: “We expect lots of people to head out and about this weekend which is likely to be the biggest domestic holiday of the year so far.
“Parks, beaches and gardens will all do very well but my top tip is that museums and galleries are always very quiet on very hot days, so if there is something you have always wanted to see now would be the time to do it.
“We will always have summer but we won’t always have David Hockney at the Tate Britain.”
James Madden, forecaster for Exacta Weather, said temperatures could nudge 30C (86F) today (Saturday) in parts of the UK.
Million of Britons will set out to make the most of the baking bank holiday weekend
He said sun-loving Britons can look forward to more sunny weather in the run up to the first day of summer on Thursday.
He said: “We could certainly see temperatures approaching 30C (86F) in parts to the south and west of the country in parts of the south east on Saturday before a thundery breakdown ensues.
“The next several days will also see temperatures remaining above average with decent amounts of sunshine on offer .
“However, there could be more in the way of some occasional showers.”