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Summer holidays to start with washout while Europe’s heatwave continues

Families heading for a getaway at the start of the summer holidays are being warned of persistent rain and the chance of thunderstorms across the UK – while Europe’s heatwave is set to continue.

Some travel disruption could be seen on Saturday as the downpours begin and there is a risk of thunderstorms on Sunday, the Met Office said.

It comes as millions of families are expected to take to the roads over the weekend either for a day trip or holiday between Friday and Monday, according to the RAC.

Traffic jams are likely on major roads, while the Port of Dover has warned it could take up to two-and-a-half hours to pass through border checks.

Next week will also start off unsettled with showers and potentially thunderstorms, and temperatures will reach the low 20s across the south and east.

Meanwhile much of Europe will continue to see temperatures in the high 30s and low 40s next week.

Ellie Wilson, meteorologist for the Met Office, said: “Friday will see a dry and bright start for much of the UK, with cloud and showers bubbling up into the afternoon – these heaviest across northern parts of England.

“It will be turning increasingly showery across Northern Ireland with outbreaks of rain through the afternoon.

“Saturday will be very wet and we could see some travel disruption, there’s going to be quite a lot of rain around, it’s something we’re keeping an eye on.

“Sunday will be turning more showery and a risk of thunderstorms in places but more brightness compared to Saturday and feeling a bit warmer.

“The start of next week will see the same continuation of showers and a risk of thunderstorms, reaching the low 20s in the south and east.”

The hot weather across Europe is expected to dip slightly over the weekend before it is due to reach the same highs next week, in the late 30s and early 40s, the forecaster added.

The highest temperatures will be seen in southern Europe before shifting further east.