Where has the summer gone?
With low pressure remaining the dominant force of our weather this week and the heat-wave of late June now seeming a distant memory, the question many people are asking is where has the summer gone?
The latest Monthly Outlook from BBC Weather shows increasing confidence that by the end of July and into early August we will see a return to warmer and more settled summer weather.
It is expected that the Azores high will build northwards and become more dominant. This will result in above-average levels of sunshine for the time of year and a rise in temperatures.
There is still a possibility of some further rainfall at times but it should be much drier than of late.
So why have we moved into a spell of unsettled weather with heavy showers, many of which have been thundery and accompanied by gusty, squally winds? The answer is the "jet stream".
The jet stream plays a fundamental role in our weather and its position can cause significant variations in our weather.
Over the last few days the BBC Weather team have been using the jet stream graphic to explain how this is affecting our current weather pattern.
BBC broadcast meteorologist John Hammond says:
"The jet stream graphic introduces a broader meteorological context to the 'poor' weather we are experiencing.
The viewer is given a clear, shorthand explanation of why our summer has 'deserted us'. In essence because the jet is unusually far south its attendant wet and windy low pressure systems are being dragged across the UK.
Normally they should be much further north at this time of year, allowing high pressure to settle the weather down.
Until the jet migrates northwards again, high pressure and warm sunshine will be rare and fleeting."
You can find out more about how jet streams were first identified and what they are here on the BBC Weather site.
During the last week the jet stream has taken a more southerly track across the Atlantic than is normal for this time of year. As a result, we are seeing a conveyor belt of low pressure systems making their way across the UK. Each of these has brought an intensification of showery activity and windy conditions with sunny spells in between. In the short term this looks likely to continue.
Like many of the additional graphics we use to help tell the weather story, such as the Atlantic pressure chart, the jet stream will not be used every day. However, when it helps tell the weather story and explains why we are experiencing one weather type or another then you are likely to see it used on our television broadcasts.