LEADING weather forecaster Jim Dale believes that we are in for a brilliant summer this year, with a string of mini-heatwaves with temperatures of up to 90 degrees F (32 C).
Dale is a senior forecaster with British Weather Services and he says this could be the best summer since 1996 - although not all his colleagues agree. However, if he is correct, it could mean a double benefit for beleaguered farms and businesses in the Dales.
Not only would good weather help bring tourists back to the area but it might help bring an end to the foot and mouth epidemic. The disease is known to thrive best in cold weather and, indeed, the present outbreak has coincided with one of the coldest later winter/early spring spells for some years.
A bit of sunshine might help kill off the virus and give us all something to smile about. We hope Jim Dale is right!