Thunderstorms will hit much of southern England and Wales this weekend as the heatwave which has left the UK sweltering comes to a sudden end.
Forecasters have warned the intense sun will disappear on Saturday and Sunday, with heavy rain and thundery showers predicted to sweep across the country.
The switch in conditions could cause flooding as well as transport disruption, the Met Office say.
England recorded its hottest temperature of the year on Tuesday – 32.2C recorded at Heathrow Airport.
An amber heat warning has even been given but time is ticking with the warm, sunny weather to be replaced by dark clouds and winds.
The Met Office has issued a yellow weather alert across much of England and Wales on Saturday and Sunday.
But meteorologist Tom Morgan said that while some areas within the warning zone could see a month’s worth of rain, the storms were unlikely to be as bad as those seen on Tuesday.
Windows were smashed and gardens “flattened” by hail in some areas, with residents describing the hailstones in Kibworth, Leicestershire, as “tennis ball sized”.
He said: “In contrast to yesterday when it was really torrential downpours and heavy hail.
“The weekend weather is just going to be more generally wet.”
As of Wednesday morning, the Environment Agency had 17 flood alerts in place throughout parts of London, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire.
It’s quite the contrast after the mercury rose to 31.1C in North Wyke, Devon, on Wednesday, while a provisional all-time record for Northern Ireland was set when 31.3C was logged at Castlederg, Co Tyrone, the Met Office said.
By Friday, with low pressure nearing from the southwest, there will be a keen east wind across all parts.
That’s likely to bring more cloud inland and keep a lid on temperatures further east, but it’ll be another sunny, very warm or hot day in western and central regions, with maxes into the mid or high 20s.
Change will be edging closer through the day, and we will need to keep an eye out to our southwest as that low pressure edges closer, destabilising the atmosphere and perhaps feeding some thundery showers northeast later on.