• Snow fall as far south as the Midlands and overnight frosts were described as "unusual" weather for mid May by the Met Office as the forecasters admitted the Jubilee could be a washout.
  • Just 17 days before summer starts, hail and sleet hit the morning rush-hour in Wolverhampton, West Mids, as well as Staffordshire, Shropshire, Cheshire and Durham.
snow, the midlands
Halfway through May and walkers on the moors above Teesdale in County Durham were met with hail, snow and bitterly cold winds
The Met Office said Scotland - where temperatures fell to a near record low for this time of year at -4C (25F) at Cairngorm, could see snow settling on the mountains and in the Pennines, Cumbria and southern Scotland,

Temperatures could even get below freezing overnight in the south in sheltered spots as the "unusual but not unprecedented" mid-May weather continues.

Usually temperatures are up to 16C (61F) at this time of year but even in the sunshine the mercury is only reaching 14C and in the wind most parts of the country are much colder.

The showers will ease off temporarily mid week before coming back in from the North West and hitting the South and South East by the weekend.

The passage of winds across the Atlantic, known as the jet stream, is part of the reason for the unsettled weather as it is creating a block of low pressure over the UK while southern Europe wallows in sunshine.

Comment: Well, almost:

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Also parts of Germany and Switzerland are covered with snow at the moment (the links given are unfortunately not in English).

The Met Office forecast the weather "looks to remain unsettled" until at least June 12, meaning showers could hit the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations on June 3-5.

Dave Britton, of the Met Office, it was impossible to predict conditions for each day this far in advance but that the weather is likely to remain unsettled.

"Conditions look to remain rather unsettled and changeable towards the end of May and into early June," he said.

Weather Online, that gives more long range forecasts, said the Wimbledon tennis championships, running from June 25 to July 8, could also be wet.

The Olympics, from July 27 to August 12, will start at the end of a week's rain, with "indifferent" conditions meaning rain is due at some point during the Games

Simon Keeling of WeatherOnline said: "A cooler and showery regime will establish into mid-June, with low pressure meaning potential rain and windier weather for all areas.

"Unsettled weather looks to continue through the remainder of June, apart from the close of the month, but July will start cool with showers for all as high pressure will be too far west for normal high summer weather.

"Mid-month sees a much warmer regime but it's then downhill with rain for all until the final week of July.

"The pattern will attempt to revert but I doubt it will make it, so 'indifferent' would be the best term to describe the weather."

Netweather forecast rainfall in the South-East down 10 per cent in June - but up 15 per cent in July. The good news is temperatures are expected to be 1C (1.8F) above normal in June and up 2C in July.

Netweather forecaster Paul Michaelwhite said: "Rainfall may be below or close-to-average in June, but a good deal of the UK looks to be close to or above-average in July. June and June are expected to be warmer than average."