BOURNEMOUTH and Poole enjoyed another scorching weekend with thousands of sunseekers packing the beaches.

On Sunday the temperature reached a high of 27 degrees Celsius, with similar temperatures forecast for today before midweek thunder and rain showers.

A spectacular lightning storm lit up the skies last night although most of the accompanying rain evaporated before it hit the ground. 

Busy Poole ran out of hotel accommodation on Saturday, and the pubs and cafés on the waterfront were busy all day, while other holiday-makers took watercraft out to escape the bustle.

“We just can’t find anywhere else for them to stay,” said a spokesman for the town’s welcome centre. “Isn’t it nice to see them all? We are enjoying it immensely.”

Staff were warning people wishing to visit Sandbanks that the car parks were likely to be full from early in the day, while most Bournemouth town centre car parks were full by midday.

Despite the huge number of visitors – and the town centre being closed to cars on Saturday evening for the Sky Ride – there were fewer traffic problems than previous weekends, although there were several minor crashes.

Both the beach and gardens were again swamped with litter, and Bournemouth council’s cleaning team worked round the clock with twice as many bin collections and teams targeting specific areas.

Jamie Hiley, owner of the Topaz Hotel in St Michael’s Road, said his guests were disgusted at the mess.

“It is such a mess in the gardens at the moment, I think there has been more rubbish left around than ever this year, either that or the council aren’t cleaning it up as often,” he said.

“A lot of my guests have mentioned the litter on the beach over the last three weeks, one German family were shocked.

“I don’t know what can be done other than to keep on at people to pick their litter up and stop ruining our beautiful town.”

For those looking to escape the crowded beaches there was a host of events over the weekend, including a Caribbean-style masquerade procession, dance workshops and performances in the Triangle, and Dorset Fire and Rescue demonstrations at Slades Farm.