The UK is set to bask in the hottest day of the year so far, with temperatures predicted to climb as high as 27C (80.6F) this week.
Over the next few days, most parts of the UK will see warm sunshine and clear skies as the mercury climbs into the mid-20s.
But by Wednesday, the temperature in London and the South East of England could surpass the 26C (78.8F) recorded in Treknow, Cornwall, on Good Friday.
Parts of the UK will be warmer than some of Europe’s top holiday destinations, including Marbella and Ibiza.
The mini heatwave will continue into Friday for some, testing the nation’s resolve as people are asked to avoid crowded outdoor spaces so two metre social distancing can be observed.
There will be a “north-south divide” on Monday and Tuesday, according to Met Office meteorologist Matthew Box, with spells of rain in north-western parts of the UK while southern areas will reach highs of 24C (75.2F).
But it will begin to clear going into the middle of the week, as warm southerly winds from the Mediterranean start to move north, Box said.
By Wednesday, parts of Scotland and northern Ireland will reach highs of 22C (71.6F) while Wales could see 23C (73.4F) by the afternoon. The North of England will hit a maximum temperature of 26C (78.8F).
Box told the PA news agency: “It’s going to be very hot for large parts of England for most of the week, reaching highs of 27C (80.6F) on Wednesday, which would make it the hottest day of the year so far.
“This will occur due to large areas of high pressure, combined with southerly winds from the continent, bringing with it, pleasant sunshine, dry skies and warmer air.”
There is a possibility of thunder and bands of rain across the south and east of England and Wales on Thursday while Friday could be windy, mainly for western areas, with heavy downpours.
Last week, prime minister Boris Johnson announced “careful” changes to the coronavirus lockdown in England.
People are now permitted to take “unlimited” outdoor exercise, sunbathe, play sports with members of their household and “drive to other destinations”.