Lightning strikes Scotland and northern England during dramatic thunderstorm

Most of England and Wales is bracing for more thunderstorms and heavy downpours as the recent heatwave creates perfect conditions for unsettled weather.

Torrential rain has already caused flash flooding on roads and railways, as well as landslides, which led to travel disruption throughout the week.

More disruption, as well as potential damage to buildings from floodwater, lightning strikes and large hailstones, could be on its way. The Met Office has issued yellow thunderstorm warnings across England and Wales that will stay in place until Monday.

The Environment Agency has also warned of sudden surface water and river flooding until Sunday due to isolated storms.

Network Rail pledges to review management of extreme weather following train derailment

Emergency services inspect the scene following the derailment of the ScotRail train which cost the lives of three people near Stonehaven (Getty)

Network Rail has pledged to review its resilience to, and management of, extreme weather following the derailment of a train earlier this week that resulted in the death of three people, including the driver.

The company is investigating the cause of the derailment, which remains unknown, but it is believed torrential rainfall and flooding contributed to the tragedy.

Chief executive Andrew Haines said there had been floods and landslips in the area due to the “appalling” weather, and Network Rail will put extra measures in place including “heightened inspections” and “medium-term work with meteorologists to improve information and forecasting”.

“Our climate is changing and it is increasingly challenging the performance and reliability of the railway, but incidents like yesterday’s devastating accident are incredibly rare, and our railway remains the safest major railway in Europe,” he said on Thursday.

“Our network was designed for a temperate climate and it’s challenged when we get extremes such as storms and floods. We are seeing this more and more and although we can address them on the ground with precautionary measures, we are acutely aware we need a long-term resolution, and we had already secured additional funding and resources to help achieve this.”

Thunderstorm warnings cover England and Wales

(Met Office)

Most of England and the entirety of Wales is under a yellow thunderstorm warning by the Met Office until Monday.

According to the weather agency, that means heavy showers and thunderstorms are expected at times.

Residents should be aware there is a small chance of homes and businesses being hit by flooding, and there is potential for damage to some buildings due to floodwater, lightning strikes and large hailstones.

The adverse weather could result in delays and cancellations to train and bus services, as well as disruption on the roads due to flash floods.

The Met Office also warns of power cuts to some homes and businesses.

Good morning, and welcome to The Independent's liveblog, where we update you on the stormy weather expected across England and Wales today.