A meteor shower will light up skies across the UK this week as stargazers in Essex may be able to catch a glimpse of the annual Leonid meteor shower.

The Leonids are very fast and bright meteors that are associated with Comet Tempel-Tuttle.

As the comet follows the path around the sun, this leaves a small path of debris causing the streaks of light we call meteors.

Meteors can be viewed by the naked eye, and the best chance to see them is somewhere dark and clear, away from light pollution.

With there being breaks in the clouds over the next couple of nights, Essex stragazers may be in luck to see the display.

When can I see the Leonid meteor shower in Essex?

Brentwood Live: Where to look for the Leonid meteor shower (PA)Where to look for the Leonid meteor shower (PA)

This year the meteor shower will be most visible pre-dawn Wednesday night, in the early hours of Thursday morning.

While this is when it will be most visible, if you miss out on Wednesday night then the shower will still be visible, just slightly so, for several days on either side.

Essex Met Office forecast for the Leonid meteor shower

The forecast across Essex for Wednesday through to Friday is predicted to be somewhat cloudy.

However, bright spells could break through the clouds on Wednesday, particularly around 9pm to 11pm, allowing clear skies for a glimpse of the shower.

Displays are better when the Tempel-Tuttle comet, which takes 33 years to orbit the sun, is closer to the Earth, an occurrence which is next due in about 15 years.