Following a prolonged period of tranquil weather across the United Kingdom, a change to stormy weather may add to slow travel for the Easter holiday weekend.
The RAC is expecting more than 20 million motorists to travel for the holiday, from Thursday through Monday, in the U.K. With millions of people hitting the roads, rails and airports, travel slowdowns are possible even where the weather cooperates.
Making matters worse, the weather will be unsettled much of the time from Thursday through Monday as a series of storms bring rounds of rain and occasional strong winds.
The first in this series of storms will arrive on Thursday, bringing scattered showers and gusty winds to all of the United Kingdom. Although it will remain dry until the afternoon in South East England.
Travelers on Good Friday will be spared any adverse weather with generally light winds and dry weather throughout the day.
A second storm will cause rainfall to spread into western parts of Northern Ireland and Scotland late Friday afternoon, with the heaviest rain arriving during late Friday night into Saturday.
Travel on Saturday will be hindered by a significant storm that brings downpours and strong winds to the British Isles.
While rainfall totals will generally be 25 mm (1 inch) or less, localized downpours can result in minor flooding and slow travel.
Strong winds over 40 mph (65 km/h) will accompany the band of rain across the U.K., which could cause delays in rail and air travel. Extensive railway engineering work that is set to take place over the holiday will only further add to the rail delays.
Easter Sunday will start off dry for most; however, rain will increase across Wales and England during the afternoon with scattered showers impacting Northern Ireland and Scotland.
The Cancer Research UK Boat Races, which include races between rowing crews from Oxford and Cambridge, begin at noon on Sunday with 250,000 or more people in attendance. Showers will begin late in the morning and become a steadier rain during the afternoon. Wellies and umbrellas may be necessary for those attending the event.
A third storm will then threaten all of the U.K. with additional rain and gusty winds on Easter Monday, impacting travel for millions returning from weekend events.