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Twisters, lightning and floods: How's summer shaping up with temperatures set to soar?

Summer skies reflected in the River Waveney at Bungay in Suffolk. Photo: Andrew Atterwill

The British weather is renowned for its remarkable twists and turns and this summer is no different. It switches with ease from storm and tempest to humid, sultry heatwave.

So far summer 2014 in the Anglia region has seen hail storms, flash floods and funnel clouds, the twisting turning fore-runners to full-blown tornadoes. But alongside that there has been warm, dry and sunny weather.

We are almost halfway through the summer months of June, July and August and up until the torrential downpours of Sunday, the summer in the Eastern Counties had been drier and sunnier than average.

A funnel cloud pictured at Wortwell near Harleston, Norfolk on Saturday 28 June 2014. Credit: Vikki Woodford

Temperatures have been around normal for a British summer in East Anglia but this week they are set to soar and could perhaps reach 30°C (86°F) or higher.

That could also bring explosive side-effects by triggering more thunderstorms later on Thursday and Friday.

Hail and surface water flooding on the A47 near Acle, Norfolk on Friday 27 June. Credit: Lesley Chalmers

Totting up the figures for the summer so far in the Anglia region, by 10am on Sunday 13 July it had been drier and sunnier than normal.

While some places would have been considerably wetter and some drier, the rainfall total averaged across the region was 63 mm. Normally by this time in the summer we would expect to have seen 74 mm.

The sunshine total is only marginally higher than average. From 1 June to 12 July there had been 279 hours of sunshine compared to the average for that period of 271 hours.

Southwold in Suffolk on the hottest day of the year so far - 4 July 2014 Credit: Scott Usher

Between the downpours and the thunderstorms over the weekend of 12/13 July, it was very warm with temperatures getting up to 25°C/77°F.

The hottest day of the year so far in the Anglia region was on 4 July when it reached 28.7°C at Writtle in Essex and Weybourne in Norfolk.

That could well be topped in the coming week as hot and humid air floods in from the continent.

Forecast for the week ahead in the Anglia region

  • Monday - Warm and dry with sunny spells. Temperature 25°C/77°F
  • Tuesday - Bright or sunny spells developing after a cloudy start. Temperature 23°C/73°F
  • Wednesday - Fine and mostly dry with a small chance of a shower. Temperature 25°C/77°F
  • Thursday - Mainly dry and sunny but with the risk of heavy showers or thunderstorms developing later. Very warm and humid with temperatures around 26°C/79°F
  • Friday - Hot and humid but with the risk of thunderstorms. Temperature 27°C/81°F
Flooded garden in Gorleston, Norfolk after the downpours on Sunday 13 July Credit: Alan Lucan

It is by no means certain that the week will end in a thundery breakdown as forecasts vary. However the thunderstorms through the weekend of 12/13 July certainly brought torrents of rain.

Wattisham in Suffolk has had 67 mm of rain in the 36 hours to 10pm on Sunday 13 July - that's more than would normally fall in five weeks of average rainfall.

While Wattisham was hit with a deluge, some places in the Anglia region dodged the showers and had no rain at all during Sunday.

Rainfall totals between 10am and 10pm on Sunday 13 July

  • 36.2 mm in Wattisham, Suffolk
  • 27.0 mm at Norwich Airport
  • 16.8 mm in Holbeach, Lincolnshire
  • 13.2 mm at Brooms Barn near Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk
  • 9.6 mm in Woburn, Beds
  • 7.2 mm in Shoeburyness, Essex
  • 5.2 mm in Santon Downham, Suffolk
  • 3.8 mm in Cavendish, Suffolk
  • 0 mm in Bedford
  • 0 mm in Harpenden, Herts

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