The biggest storm for years is on its way to Cornwall and could cause falling trees, damage to buildings and disrupt power and transport.
The fierce storm is being cooked up off the coast of Cornwall and is expected to arrive overnight on Sunday.
The Met Office said gusts of more than 80mph are expected and issued an alert warning the public to be prepared to take action.
The Weather Channel has christened the weather event the 'Saint Jude Day Storm' after the patron saint of desperation and lost causes.
Wet and windy weather is forecast through the weekend but the situation is expected to worsen dramatically on Sunday evening, just in time for the start of the half-term holidays.
The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for the public to be aware of heavy rain on Sunday evening.
The warning levels increase on Monday with an amber alert - to be prepared for action.
The Met Office said: "The public should be prepared for the risk of falling trees as well as damage to buildings and other structures, bringing disruption to transport and power supplies."
Normally Atlantic storms of this type develop much further to the west of the UK and are waning in strength by the time they reach the UK and Ireland.
Forecasters said this storm was more unusual, developing much closer to the UK and potentially tracking across the country while still in its most powerful phase.
If the storm arrives in line with current predictions, some areas could see some of their strongest winds for a number of years.
Dan Williams, senior press officer at the Met Office, said: "There is potential for a significant storm to come through. We can see some strong winds with gusts of 70-80mph in exposed parts.
"All the ingredients are there. We've got a really strong jet stream and warm air and the combination could create a deep, vigorous low pressure to the west of the UK.
Heavy rain and strong winds are forecast through the weekend ahead of the probable arrival of the major storm.
Mr Williams said: "There is all of that going on but people should really keep an eye out for Sunday night and Monday."
The Weather Channel said according to its forecasts gusts could reach up to 90mph with rainfall of up to 40mm on Monday morning.