Britain will face torrential downpours and cooler temperatures this week as normal spring weather returns to the UK following days of sweltering sunshine.
The country basked in unseasonably warm temperatures this weekend, with thousands of Britons ignoring repeated warnings to stay home as part of ongoing efforts to clamp down on Covid-19 by heading to DIY stores, parks and beaches.
Police were seen speaking to individuals sunbathing alone or with a partner in Greenwich Park, Hyde Park and St James’ Park in London yesterday, ahead of the country entering its sixth week of coronavirus lockdown.
B&Q’s decision to reopen 130 stores also saw massive queues forming outside its outlets in Watford, Edinburgh, Bristol and Swansea, as people used the shutdown to catch up on DIY.
Police chiefs today asked for ‘clear and unambiguous laws, guidance and communication from the Government around what the public can and can’t do’ – as lone sunbathers were scolded while hundreds were allowed to gather outside B&Qs under nonsensical lockdown rules.
But the warmer weather is now set to come to an end, with two weeks’ of rain expected to fall across Britain tonight, with the Midlands and Wales forecast to see 33mm in the next 24 hours alone.
People make the most of what could be the final day of dry weather on the beach at Lee-on-Solent, Hampshire, earlier today
The country’s worst-hit areas, most likely England’s midlands and Wales, are facing up to 30mm of rain in the next 24 hours
Parts of northern England will see temperatures of 52F (11C) today as they bear the brunt of the downpours.
Wednesday will be a little warmer, with possible temperatures of 61F (16C), but a new band of rain will be moving up towards the north east, which could see 22mm of rainfall.
Thursday will see scattered showers – some heavy and thundery – across many parts of the UK.
It will be a ‘cooler, more unsettled week’ for much of the UK as temperatures return to average for this time of year, with some downpours expected.
Forecaster Craig Snell added that across Wales, the Midlands and over towards Yorkshire on Monday, it is expected to be cloudy with outbreaks of rain.
On Tuesday, a spell of persistent rain is expected to move across parts of England and Wales, while bright spells and scattered showers continue in Northern Ireland and Scotland.
People photograph the pebble stacks this morning on the beach at Whitley Bay which stretches for a quarter of a mile
Bamburgh castle on the Northumberland coast today at sunrise, as rain and lower temperatures are expected across the country this week following days of uninterrupted sunshine and warm weather
People sit on the beach at Hove seafront today as they soak up what is likely to be the last warm weather for up to two weeks
Another band of rain will push north-eastwards on Wednesday, according to the Met Office.
‘So on the final day of April, we will actually have a day of April showers across many parts of the UK,’ Mr Snell said.
‘A much more different picture from this week where places have just seen blue skies and sunshine. Next week, there will be a lot more cloud in the sky and for many of us we will see some rain at some point.’
Boris Johnson was today told to ‘get a grip’ by police chiefs over nonsensical lockdown rules that saw lone sunbathers scolded but hundreds allowed to gather outside B&Qs across Britain amid the warm weather.
With no exit plan in sight, large numbers of Britons went out to shop and enjoy the weather over the weekend amid fears the lockdown appears to be unravelling.
Police were seen speaking to individuals sunbathing alone or with a partner in Greenwich Park, Hyde Park and St James’ Park in London yesterday.
Two people enjoy their daily exercise with a bike ride through the picturesque Oxfordshire countryside earlier today
Groups of people stay a safe distance apart as they walk along Hove seafront today, with temperatures reaching a high of 32F
The unseasonably warm weather saw more people on the beach despite the government’s calls for the public to stay at home
Yet B&Q’s decision to reopen 130 stores saw massive queues forming outside its outlets in Watford, Edinburgh, Bristol and Swansea, as people used the shutdown to catch up on DIY.
Today Ken Marsh, chair of the Met Police Federation, said: ‘You can’t have a scenario where police are telling two people in a park not to sit on a bench but 50 yards away there’s 300 people, can’t put a fag packet between them, queuing to go into a DIY store.
‘Police officers are on the front line of combating the coronavirus crisis. We need clear and unambiguous laws, guidance and communication from the Government around what the public can and can’t do. What is essential and what isn’t’.
Mr Johnson is back in work today after almost losing his life to coronavirus and there are deafening calls for him to reveal an exit plan to loosen Britain’s lockdown.
Hundreds were allowed to queue to enter this B&Q in Watford as Ken Marsh, chair of the Met Police Federation, said the rules ‘don’t make sense’
A Police officer speaks with a lone person in St James Park as people enjoyed the sunshine over the weekend
Police patrolling Greenwich Park also went from group to group as chiefs said the lockdown rules were confused
There were signs that the public’s temperance was creaking as beaches in Brighton and Bournemouth as well as parks all over the UK were busier than they had been over the past five weeks.
Various forces have highlighted the most flagrant breaches of the guidance they have come across on social media – but others have complained of a heavy-handed approach.
Devon and Cornwall Police fined a couple from Kent for driving around 300 miles for a ‘mini-break’ by the sea. Their car was confiscated after the driver was found to have no licence or insurance.
Ten people from London who travelled 245 miles to go walking in North Wales were sent home and reported by police for breaking lockdown rules.
The group, travelling in two separate vehicles, had travelled the five-hour journey from the capital earlier on Sunday.
Members of the public follow social distancing guidelines and queue in the car park of B&Q in Edinburgh
There were also massive queues at B&Q in Swansea yesterday as stores across the country reopened to customers
Members of the public relax and sunbathe on the beach in Brighton and Hove despite the Coronavirus lockdown laws
But they were stopped by police near their destination on the A5 in Bethesda.
They told officers they were intending to go walking in Snowdonia, the mountainous National Park in North Wales.
Instead, officers from North Wales Police, who tweeted brief details of the incident, reported them for breaching lockdown laws.
Two couples from Slough have been sent packing by police after they turned up at an Airbnb 100 miles away in Gloucestershire for a weekend break in flagrant breach of lockdown rules.
The incident near Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, was one of several breaches reported in the area over weekend.
The two couples were warned and told to leave the county by the police.
Officers in the same area of Gloucestershire also shut down a hand car wash and gave warnings to people attending BBQs and house parties.
Courtesy DAILY MAIL