Thunderstorms and gale-force winds set to batter Britain on this side of the Atlantic bringing strong seas and heavy rain
- Winds as strong as 55mph felt in some parts of the UK and blustery weather expected to continue into the weekend until it subsides on Monday
- Storms to hit swathes of Britain tomorrow with waves building already
- Snow and wet sleet to fall in northern England and Scotland
- Motorists smash into each other in Cornwall and Devon as hail batters roads
- Cars smash into each other on ferry service between Poole and Jersey as gale force winds hit
By LARISA BROWN
Thunderstorms, hail, and gale-force winds have lashed Britain and look set to batter the country through the weekend.
Winds as strong as 55mph and intensifying heavy rainfall will hit swathes of the country while the remnants of Superstorm Sandy die a death across the other side of the ocean.
Blustery winds have become so strong they have caused rough seas - with waves already beginning to build in parts of southern England.
Forecasters predict a wintry flavour to the stormy weather with snow and wet sleet expected to fall this morning in northern England and Scotland.
Storm clouds gather over the English Channel as the DFDS Dover Seaways leaves the Port of Dover, Kent, as the unsettled weather continues
Looming: Storm clouds over Brighton yesterday as British weather is set to take a turn for the worse
Calm: Two rainbows appeared in the sky in Hove, Southern England, after stormy clouds lifted yesterday afternoon for a moment's rest
Throughout this evening gale-force gusts of wind will travel across the English channel from Dorset, hitting Kent this morning, creating large waves along the coast.
Winds as strong as 55mph hit parts of southern England today.
The breezy weather will ease on Saturday, according to forecasters, but will pick up again on Sunday.
Thunder and lightening and heavy downpours will hit west Wales and the south and west of England tomorrow and could carry on until Sunday.
Cornwall was lashed by blinding hailstorms this morning as bad weather swept across the country following a night which saw torrential rain and flooding in many places.
Devon and Cornwall Police said there had been at least four crashes on the busy A30 as motorists battled to see the road ahead when the hail began hammering down.
Gail force winds caused 30 cars to smash into each other on a ferry crossing, causing thousands of pounds worth of damage.
James Rondel, a passenger on Condor’s fast ferry service between Poole, Dorset, and Jersey, said the cars crashed together because of strong force six winds.
A spokesman for Condor Ferries said: 'The cars were strapped down, but rough conditions caused them to move.
'It was quite a heavy journey and some of the cars had bounced into each other and there was quite a bit of damage, there was even one car which lost its front bumper.'
Five Oxfordshire rivers are on flood alert after a night of heavy rain.
The Environment Agency has warned families living near the swollen River Thame and Chalgrove Brook.
They say similar flood alerts are in place for the Ginge Brook in the Steventon area, the Langford Brook and Wendlebury Brook.
The inclement weather is set to subside by Monday.
A spokesman for the Met Office said: 'Thursday could see thunder and lightening, hail and blustery showers which could continue until Sunday.
'Gale force gusts from now until the early hours of the morning will create relatively large waves from Dorset along to the Kent coast.
'The strongest winds will... continue into Friday.
'Wet sleet and snow will provide a wintry flavour over higher ground in northern England, Cumbria, Snowdonia and Scotland.
'The tropical storm Sandy didn't make its way across the Atlantic towards us, the weather is just part and parcel of similar conditions that we saw over the last weekend.'
A dog was pictured playing in the waves in West Sussex as heavy seas began to build yesterday afternoon.
And storm clouds were captured over Brighton yesterday, followed by two rainbows over Hove in a moment of calm before thunderstorms expected today.
Source: Daily Mail, UK.