Warm air and sunshine to boost temperatures to 18C
Parts of Britain could enjoy weather as warm as Barcelona this weekend with temperatures reaching up to 18C (64.4F), forecasters have said.
Warm air and sunshine will sweep north from the continent, offering a pleasant change from the turbulent weather Storm Katie brought over Easter last weekend.
Temperatures could reach 18C (64.4F) in London, and up to 17C (62.2F) in central and southern England on Sunday - putting them on a par with Barcelona and hotter than the Spanish capital Madrid, which is expected to see temperatures of 15C (59F).
From Saturday, the UK will be able to feel the warmer weather, which will be around 5C higher than the English average for April, 11C (51.8C).
Met Office forecaster Craig Snell said: "Warmer air will become widespread on Sunday and a lot of us will notice a slightly warmer feel, slightly muggier. It will be the first widespread warm spell we have seen this year."
The warmer climate is due to tropical continental air being brought into the UK through a change in wind direction.
Mr Snell said although the weather will be noticeably warmer, we can still expect some April showers, which will get heavier on Monday.
He added: " There will be plenty of dry and bright weather but there will be rain at some times.
"We will continue to see the warm air coming up from the continent but it looks like a much more showery day on Monday. It's a brief taste of warmer weather which will end by Tuesday."
Bookmakers are predicting the hottest day of the year this weekend. Coral slashed odds on the warmest day of the year occurring from 5/1 to even money.
Bets on temperatures reaching 18C are placed at 5/1, with the odds of 9/4 offered on warm weather hitting 16C (60F).
The bookmakers also seem sceptical that this April will be the hottest on record, with odds of 100/1.
Nicola McGeady, spokeswoman for Coral, said: "The odds indicate that the winter woollies will finally be ditched this weekend as temperatures are set to soar and judging by the bets, punters are banking on sunny start to April."