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Weather guide Monday 15th to Sunday 21st July 2013

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[size=3][b]Headline: Continuing dry, very warm/ hot and largely sunny! Localised storms from Friday[/b][/size]

[size=3]A fantastic week of Summer weather for all! Hottest over Wales where temperatures have been into the low 80's f (27 to 28c) at times, with each day reaching at least 24c at this location this week. Not as warm for the Midlands until this weekend but yesterday it reached a sweltering 30c at Coventry and Rugby! Very sunny too, an estimated 95 hours bright sunshine in the past week here as judged from my webcam captures, that's an average of over 13 hours per day! The only slight fly in the ointment was Wednesday for the Midlands where it was a rather cloudy and cooler day. Suffice to say a bone dry week for the vast majority of places, although a few spots caught a thundery shower in the Midlands yesterday, such as the Shrewsbury and Hereford environs. At least nights have been relatively cool, it got down to just 6.4c at dawn Friday here in Ceredigion. and most nights fell below 11c here in the countryside (11c being average for a July night). More of the same to come this week, very warm to hot with temperatures getting into the 80's fahrenheit again at times, especially from mid week onwards. July 2013 may well be going down in the annals of outstandingly warm and sunny Summer months! With only 4.7mm at Llanwnnen and 2.1mm at Coventry after two weeks of this month, and with very little rain showing in the models for the next fortnight, July 2013 could well become the driest for a good number of years (previous dry July examples: 2006 had just 30mm here, while 1999 had 18mm at Coventry). Plenty more heat and sunshine then in the coming week, with high pressure continuing to be stuck favourably over or close to the UK.[/size]

[size=3]A foggy start in places on Sunday, then with patchy cloud for West Wales, and also some low cloud for the East Midlands as seen on the recent satellite imagery, this should be breaking to give another largely sunny afternoon, very warm generally with maxima 25 to 28c, although Cardigan Bay coasts nearer 21c with the sea breeze. A refreshingly cool night to follow down to 9 to 12c, although perhaps feeling sticky for cities. High pressure has slipped just to the SW of the UK for the start of this week, this permitting westerly winds and some rain to affect Scotland, this should though be as far as the more unsettled conditions makes it this week, as by mid week the high is slap bang over us once more! On Monday then, warm to hot with sunny periods, temperatures ranging from 21c for Cardigan Bay coasts where there is an onshore breeze again, 25c for inland and south coastal West Wales, and a hot 28c for the Midlands. Most days this week will in fact reach 80f across the Midlands, a proper 'heatwave' here. Parts of Cardigan Bay could turn misty at times given the NW flow off the sea. Again, on Monday night it will be refreshingly cool - if you stand in the garden at midnight - but with the retained heat in our homes, perhaps a problem sleeping! Tuesday a repeat performance, plentiful sunshine and warmth, if not heat. Peak temperatures in the 25 to 29c range, highest for the Midlands, cooler for Cardigan Bay coasts. [/size]

[size=3]High pressure nudges closer in from the SW on Wednesday, largely sunny once more, and potentially very hot for the Midlands, 30c being shown by the GFS model here, while West Wales is more pleasantly warm with sea breezes, 21c on exposed coasts and 26c well inland, just the chance that some sea mist willl affect some western beaches on Wednesday. A subtle change from mid week is that we may well be losing the luxury of the relatively cool nights, so uncomfortable nights and trouble getting off to sleep by the end of the week! Thursday and the heat is more widespread once more, as the high sits over the UK, West Wales loses the sea breeze effect and joins in with the 80f heat. Sunny and hot then for Thursday, maxima widely 26 to 30c even along many coasts. A sticky night for Thursday too, probably remaining above 16c for cities and coasts, then rinse and repeat for Friday, hot and sunny reaching 27 to 30c widely, and little wind to cool us off! Friday is one of those Summer days when the heat is so strong that it may form a 'heat low' so the chance of a few thunderstorms in places for Friday afternoon or evening, the Welsh hills most at risk of these perhaps, but the majority of places missing these localised downpours.[/size]

[size=3][font=arial]Next weekend and no respite from the heat and sunshine, and for most of us it will be over two weeks without rain and an 'absolute drought' (16 successive dry days), the gardens and allotments will be parched and plants wilting! Relatively high pressure remains steadfastly over the UK, although as with Friday a 'thermal low' may form over land in the afternoons, resulting in a thunderstorm for a fortunate few of us! Plenty of sunshine and humidity next weekend, highs again widely into the low to mid 80s f (27 to 30c). Indications that the settled, very warm spell hangs on towards the last week of July before it may at long last turn cooler and more unsettled? Watch this space...[/font][/size]
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