A row of sun loungers on an empty beach in Broadstairs in the UK, which has seen widespread showers, cloudy skies, and high winds – a stark contrast to the extreme heat of August 2022.
While most Brits are having a nice long whinge about the summer wash-out, tourists from continental Europe are flocking to the rain-lashed island to escape their heatwave.
Bernard Donoghue, director of the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions, which has the National Trust, English Heritage and zoos among its members, said record temperatures in Europe, with highs above 40C and wildfires, have driven tourists to the UK.
He told the PA news agency: “We’ve seen a real boom in visitors from Spain, Italy, Greece, Turkey, to London, in particular, over the last three weeks.”
But it might not be enough to offset the loss of domestic trade as many outdoor attractions, apart from zoos, are having a bad time amid the downpours.
He said: “Where a destination is quite weather dependent, like seaside destinations, they’re having quite a tough time at the moment.
“So people are making the switch to go to museums, galleries, indoor attractions, particularly in cities.”
As a result of the high pressure being pushed across the continent, low pressure systems have been directed towards the UK, and it has been held in place by a “blocked weather pattern” – leading to jumpers and umbrellas all round.
People walking along the Millennium Bridge, London, during a rain shower.
The high-pressure system, which crossed the Mediterranean from north Africa, has led to emergency measures being put in place in several European countries as temperatures as high as 47C (118F) have been recorded in the hottest areas.
Wildfires have broken out in at least 10 countries around the Mediterranean Sea as working hours were changed s to avoid the midday heat, while air-conditioned areas were opened to the public.
But it might be about to turn in Britain.
BBC Weather has posted on X – formerly known as Twitter – to say that “we have finally found summer” with a short video highlighting that next Thursday (August 10) is when we can finally expect some warmer weather.