After months of downpours and gales, people in Cornwall could be forgiven for wondering what the big yellow warm thing is in the sky this weekend, as a welcome period of warm weather arrives.

Temperatures could be as high as 16C (60F) - higher than some holiday destinations in the Mediterranean - as a wave of high pressure sends the mercury rising.

Sunday's temperature of 15C to 17C will be on a par with the Greek capital of Athens and higher than the 14C (57.2F) forecast for the Turkish coastal resort Bodrum.

Much of southern England can expect to enjoy temperatures in the mid-teens on Saturday and Sunday, with Sunday being the warmest day of the year to date.

The warmer weather is set to continue into next week.

John Lee, forecaster with MeteoGroup, said: "The weather will be getting much better into the weekend.

"The south of England will be somewhat drier than we've had recently, with a wave of high pressure.

"It means we're looking at a forecast of up to 17C in London on Sunday. Even other parts of the South could see 15C and 16C (60.8F) this weekend."