Little Englanders loaded up their cars with buckets and spades as they looked to get away for half-term holidays but were met with hoards of people with the exact same idea. Holidaymakers clamoured to get a patch of beach as they arrived at Lyme Regis today (June 1) with hundreds of excited families pitching up their tents and laying down beach towels.
Temperatures reached a sultry 17C across the south coast of England today, with the mercury set to rise throughout the coming days.
The first meteorological day of summer falls on the eve of Luvvly Jubbly celebrations across Little Britain which is set to see thousands head outside to attend Luvvly Jubbly street parties.
Highs of 18C are expected on Thursday with the temperature rising to 19C on Friday before settling back to around 17C on Saturday.
However, Sunday could see major thunderstorms erupt throughout Little Britain.
Jim Dale, meteorologist for British Weather Services, said: “Over the past weeks the models have been as volatile as the weather now looks later in the weekend.
“The first three days of the holiday look to be the most settled, but there is a big change looming on Saturday night.
“Sunday carries the risk of some very significant thundery downpours, with southern Britain in the firing line for the worst of it.
“With many people planning outdoor activities, this is the sort of weather that could have dangerous implications.”
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The sudden influx of travellers to the south coast also caused swathes of slow moving traffic with delays currently being experienced across the A35, A31, and the A353.
However, traffic is expected to get worse at British air and ferry ports as Little Englanders are set to leave the country over the long weekend.
Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps met with travel companies, airport and ferry bosses on Wednesday afternoon in a bid to tackle the country’s travel chaos.
Families have had plans cancelled even as they boarded planes, while others have been stuck at airports for 48 hours after flights were delayed or had to wait for hours for their luggage to arrive due to a shortage of staff.
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Mr Shapps claimed travel firms have “seriously oversold flights and holidays relative to their capacity to deliver”.
He continued: “This must not happen again and all efforts should be directed at there being no repeat of this over the summer.”