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May Day 2018

Bank Holiday weather



The 2018 May Day Bank Holiday is on the 7th May. The weather next week is looking quite unsettled. Will the prospects improve in time for the Bank Holiday weekend?

Bluebells on Ashridge near Berkhamsted

May Day outlook

A change to more settled weather is expected to develop during the next few days as high pressure builds from the southwest. The charts below are from the GEFS06z update, Wednesday 2nd May 2018. The GEFS ensemble helps to identify the probabilities of different weather outcomes. It works by running the same computer model 20 times and varying the starting conditions each time to help account for uncertainty.

Maximum temperature spread forecast

The postage stamp plot shows the forecast temperatures from each GEFS model run on the afternoon of Monday 7th May.

Key points:

Most of the runs show warm weather in the southern half of the UK with temperatures into the low 20Cs. In the north temperatures are closer to the seasonal average but rather warm conditions are shown on a few of the stamps.

GEFS May Day maximum temperatures

Precipitation spread forecast

The postage stamp plot below shows the forecast precipitation from each GEFS model run on the afternoon of Monday 7th May.

Key points:

The majority of the individual stamps suggest it will be dry in southern and central areas, although a few indicate the possibility of showers. In the north there is a greater risk of rain, particularly in the north west.

GEFS May Day precipitation


Summarising the forecast data

The latest forecast data favours fine weather in much of the country during the early May Bank Holiday period. On balance we consider:

1) A good deal of dry and warm weather with variable amounts of cloud is probable in the southern half of the UK.

2) Northern areas have more changeable and cooler conditions, with a risk of showers or longer spells of rain at times, particularly in the west.

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Cold with scattered wintry showers


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