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Further torrential downpours expected

Parts of south east England have seen intense downpours today and further heavy rain is expected to affect many parts into Friday.

As per our weather warnings Summer downpours on the way, the thundery showers developed over France and spread into southern England overnight and through this morning.

There has been some torrential rain, with parts of south east England seeing the heaviest of the rain up to now.

There have been reports of 20-40mm of rain falling within one hour. For example, Plumpton, in East Sussex saw 22.6mm of rain between 11am and midday and Sellindge, Kent recorded 40.2mm of rain between 7am and 1pm. This has led to reports of surface water flooding and traffic disruption.

These areas of heavy, locally thundery rain are expected to continue to spread northwards, affecting much of England and Wales at times through the rest of today and into Friday. The rain may be torrential at times and there is also a risk of gusty winds and hail.

On Friday the heavy rain is likely to also affect eastern parts of Scotland, although there is less risk of thunder here. Met Office National Severe Weather Warnings have been issued.

Eddy Carroll, Chief Meteorologist at the Met Office, said: "There is now concern that further heavy, thundery rain starting to develop over northeastern France may affect some of the areas which have already had some really intense rain.

"Falling on already saturated ground, this rain brings a further risk of flooding of roads or properties. With this in mind an Amber severe weather warning has been issued for Sussex, Kent and parts of Surrey and Essex for later this afternoon and evening."

We also expect most parts will see some dry weather between the spells of heavy rain, and so everyone should keep up to date with latest forecast for their location before heading out.

Our meteorologists and advisors are working closely with our partners to keep everyone up to date with the latest forecast information so they can plan and prepare for the expected weather.

RAC spokesman Pete Williams said: "Drivers are likely to get a taste of some tough driving conditions over the next 24 to 48 hours with the forecast of torrential rain and the risk of hailstones. The RAC is urging drivers to expect the worst and prepare for challenging conditions on the roads.

"Exercising care and caution is vital in heavy rain conditions especially as traffic volumes are particularly high at the moment. Cut your speed, use dipped headlights and avoid driving through deep water if you encounter flood conditions and remember to show consideration for other road users, particularly cyclists and pedestrians. Also be prepared to pull over and wait for the worst conditions to subside if you are hit by a heavy storm."

On a brighter note, as we head into the weekend we expect to see a gradual improvement in the weather from the west, with drier and brighter weather and some sunshine expected for most.

Malcolm Bell, Head of Visit Cornwall, said: "We would all love wall to wall sunny weather, but this week we had a stunning day on Saturday that matched the med and some great dry days with sunny afternoons and evenings to enjoy our beaches, outdoor attractions, gardens and countryside. So let's make the most of a couple of wet days as over the last two decades Cornwall has created or improved our all weather offer with amazing historic houses, family attractions, great museums and galleries or maybe it's a great day for wakeboarding, paddle boarding or surfing after all if you are going to get wet go the whole hog."

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