The Best (and a few of the Worst) Things About British Summertime

So, I got my wish and the sun came out (here’s my rant about the UK weather madness from a couple of weeks ago). We’ve now had at least FIVE WHOLE DAYS days of decent weather, and I made it to the beach for a BBQ last night. Everyone’s cheered up and…dare I say it…finally there’s even a sense of being excited about the Olympics.

To say my thanks to Mother Nature for moving that jet stream on, and celebrate the fab days/weeks/definitely-not-months ahead of us, here’s my two cents about why I love summer in the UK. Please do let me know your favourite things as well!

The Best Things About UK Summertime

Seeing our beautiful countryside

The UK countryside is sometimes not given enough credit, but only because we don’t get all that many chances to enjoy it. I barely knew that the beautiful Gower peninsula existed before I lived nearby for a while, only to find out it’s absolutely the most stunning region. But even the Gower goes terribly quiet for the many months of the year it’s cold and rainy. So it’s basically our national duty to get outside and experience what our country can offer, while we can, before we have to hide away at home for months.


Lashings and lashings of ginger beer, anyyone? Not much makes me feel more British than packing up and enjoying a picnic. Food just tastes great out in the open.

Two-salad Days

While we’re on the subject of food, how about those days where all you can face for lunch is a salad and all you can face for dinner is a salad? If anyone tried to make me eat a take away on a day like today then I would probably literally throw it back in their face.


UK festivals rock. Literally.

Outdoor Swimming

Swimming outdoors, especially in the sea, is exhilarating, refreshing and wondrous in a way that you’d never get in an indoor pool. The sharp initial chill, gradual warming up, and the feeling of being ‘one with nature’ and all that…I find it cures all woes.


It’s been so rainy lately that even popping to someone’s house for a cup of tea seems like a mission. Then the sun makes an appearance and suddenly there’s a group of 15 of us on the beach. I haven’t seen some of these people since, well, that week it was kinda warm in April!


You can’t drink Pimms indoors, it’s practically the law. So as soon the sun comes out, you just have to mix a jug of Pimms and head outside.


Maybe it’s the Vitamin D, or maybe it’s all the above, but the sun coming out means lots of smiley people.


I don’t like winter clothes. The bulkiness isn’t flattering to those of us with curves, wool is itchy, and it means you can go weeks between leg shaves without even realising. Unpacking the summer wardrobe each year is a time of joy, especially when finding those items you might otherwise have forgotton about.

The #1 best thing

The absolute best, best thing about British summer is this: It’s unpredictability. What else would we talk about otherwise?

(and a few of the worst)


Because we get so little sun, there’s a great British tendency to assume that we need to abuse the opportunity for tanning.

People wearing very few clothes

You know who you are. Put that t-shirt back on, add an inch to your hemline, and don’t overlook the importance of ensuring you don’t have a VPL.

Going to work

It’s forecast to be sunny for the next five days and we STILL have to go to work for 8 hours a day? Seems a tad unfair. Especially when you work in central Brighton and can see a steady stream of people making their exodus towards the beach. Grr.

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