Wet weekend forecast for Peterborough as thunderstorms set to finally break heatwave

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Rain has been forecast for Peterborough for three consecutive days for the first time in more than a month as thunderstorms look set to finally break the city's prolonged heatwave.

While neighbouring Cambridge saw thunderstorms last night (Thursday) Peterborough remained dry, hot and humid.

A wet weekend is forecast for Peterborough

A wet weekend is forecast for Peterborough

But there is a yellow weather warning in force for torrential rain and thunderstorms tonight, Friday July 27, with the Met Office forecasting rain from 6pm onwards, but most likely at 9pm when there is a 60% chance.

Rain is also forecast in Peterborough between 10am and 2pm tomorrow, Saturday with temperatures around 24 degrees before the temperature drops again on Sunday to a more comfortable 20C with the Met Office forecasting an 80% chance of heavy rain from 1pm.

Rain clouds and thunderstorms could also prevent skygazers from seeing the "blood moon" lunar eclipse on Friday as forecasters warn of torrential downpours across eastern parts of Great Britain.

Although the lunar eclipse is expected to last 103 minutes, observers in the UK and Ireland will not be able to catch the start as the moon will still be below the horizon.

However, the partial eclipse will be visible for almost four hours.

Dr Gregory Brown, of the Royal Observatory Greenwich, said: "We miss a section of the eclipse due to the moon being below our horizon when it starts.

"South eastern observers will be able to see the eclipse for somewhat longer than north western ones."

The rising full moon will also change from shining silver to deepblood-red during the eclipse.

Dr Brown said: "At this time, the moon passes into the shadow of the Earth, blocking the light from the sun.

"However instead of turning black as you might expect, the atmosphere of the Earth bends the light of the sun onto the moon causing it to turn a deep red colour."

Mars will add to the spectacle shining brightly below the blood moon as it reaches perihelic opposition - where the Red Planet and the sun are on directly opposite sides of Earth.

And those awake after 11pm will be able to catch a glimpse of the International Space Station (ISS), as it moves quickly across the sky from west to east. It will appear like a bright star, before fading from sight a few minutes later.

Unlike a solar eclipse, the lunar event can be viewed without wearing protective eye gear.

Dr Brown said: "As the entire eclipse will occur when the moon is fairly close to the horizon, the main thing to ensure is that you have a clear sightline to the south east.

"Try to find an open space or high hilltop clear of trees and tall buildings around you."

For those living in thunderstorms warning areas hoping to catch a glimpse of the eclipse, Mr Madge says having a clear night sky could be down to luck.

He said: "The thunderstorms will be quite widespread but not necessarily close together and it's going to be down to fortune whether people in certain locations are able to see this astronomical spectacle.

"It's likely some people will miss the event because of the storms but, still, it's worth looking out for and being hopeful."

The next total lunar eclipse in the UK will take place on January 19, 2019.