Easter Sunday threatens be a washout after forecasters warned that the current warm and dry spell could come to an abrupt end.

Meteorologists said the mild temperatures enjoyed by most of Britain over the past few days will continue into next week before dipping on Good Friday.

Andy Ratcliffe, a weather forecaster at MeteoGroup, said: "It will be more unsettled than this weekend.

"This weekend we've had high pressure influence the weather across much of the UK, but it is looking like pressure will be lower through next weekend."

He said the high and low pressure systems coming into contact could result in heavy rainfall over the Bank Holiday weekend.

Bad weather at the end of the week could combine with a surge in Bank Holiday traffic.

Traffic information firm Trafficmaster predicts congestion on the roads will be significant on Friday and Saturday but peak on Thursday, which is predicted to be the busiest day on the roads so far this year.

Met Office forecaster Kirk Waite said: "There's quite a lot of low confidence for the Easter weekend. From Thursday onwards we're less confident. We're looking at things gradually becoming cloudier through Thursday, it might be a bit cooler.

"The question mark comes on Saturday.

"We're going to get high pressure in the north and east of the country. What this means is that we will have an area of lower pressure to the south and west. And the UK is going to be sat between the two.

"The lower pressure will have the wetter, cooler conditions.

"As we go into Sunday the threat of the things from the south-west increases.