Chelsea blooms but it’s not so grim up North

Amelia Clayton, 4, riding past a wall of colour in the grounds of Temple Newsam, Leeds. Picture: James Hardisty,

Amelia Clayton, 4, riding past a wall of colour in the grounds of Temple Newsam, Leeds. Picture: James Hardisty,

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WHY travel south to enjoy the attractions of the Chelsea Flower Show when the warm sunshine is helping Yorkshire bloom in a riot of colour?

While preparations got underway in London for the start of horticultural extravaganza, a huge display of rhododendrons in the grounds of Temple Newsam, Leeds, provided the perfect colourful backdrop to another day when temperatures again headed north of 20C across the region.

It became the hottest day of the year when 26.3C (79.3F) was recorded at London’s Heathrow Airport comfortably put Mediterranean holiday hotspot Ibiza in the shade where temperatures only reached 22C (71.6F).

Much of the UK enjoyed balmy temperatures well above the May average of 16C. Met Office spokesman Dan Williams said: “A good chunk of England has seen temperatures of 20C (68F) and above today. It’s only in far western places areas like Cornwall that it hasn’t got above 20C, but even these places were in the high teens.

“The lowest UK maximum has been around 12-13C (53.6-55.4F) in Northern Ireland and parts of Scotland.”

It is not expected to be as hot today, but it is still forecast to touch 20C in parts of Yorkshire. But thunder and rain are expected in the afternoon.

Chelsea spectacular: Page 7; weather: Back Page.

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