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Normal summer weather 'on the way'

Britain is finally expected to get drier and warmer next week - but only after the country is hit by yet more downpours.

This summer's record-breaking grim weather has been caused by the jet stream settling unusually far south. Now experts believe it is on its way back north, restoring a "more usual summer pattern".

The wettest period of April to June on record, followed by more heavy rain so far this month, has caused widespread - and in some cases, repeated - flooding.

More showers are expected to dampen the nation's spirits over the coming days, with heavy rain in the middle of the week, forecasters said.

The slightly improving conditions over the weekend have meant the Environment Agency (EA) now has a vastly reduced number of flood warnings and alerts. There are currently just four flood warnings in England and 21 flood alerts, a fraction of the number in place during the height of the recent flooding. They remain in place as drainage systems and river catchments struggle to come to terms with the record-breaking deluges that have left vast parts of the country saturated.

Tom Tobler, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, the Press Association's weather division, said: "There is going to be more rain. There will be patchy rain around... more towards the North. (On Wednesday) it will be very wet in places - southern Scotland, northern England, Northern Ireland and north Wales."

He said there would be some rain around on Thursday, but not as heavy as the previous day.

Looking ahead to the latter part of the week, he added: "We will get high pressure building to the west, and it looks like that's going to give us a couple of dry days on Friday and Saturday. It looks like there's going to be high pressure across the south of the UK, so it looks like it's going to be generally drier next week. But northern areas will see some rain, particularly northern Scotland."

Asked about the jet stream heading back towards its normal position, he said: "It's looking like a more usual summer pattern with the jet stream further north. It looks like southern areas can expect some drier and warmer weather. It's more like average summer conditions and weather we would expect."

He said there was "no sign" of the jet stream going back south after returning to its more northerly position.

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