Britain bakes in record August bank holiday heatwave

Forecasters say temperatures could hit 33 degrees on Sunday and Monday

People jump into the sea at Whitby in Yorkshire during a bank holiday heatwave. Photograph: PA

People jump into the sea at Whitby in Yorkshire during a bank holiday heatwave. Photograph: PA

 

Sunseekers are enjoying Britain’s hottest ever August bank holiday weekend.

Temperatures were still climbing when the previous record high was broken as 31.6 degrees was recorded at Heathrow at around 1pm, the Met Office said.

Just an hour later, temperatures were moving towards 33 degrees in the east and south east of England, according to Met Office meteorologist Sarah Kent.

She said: “It could be a maximum of 33 degrees and again on Monday.

People on Bournemouth beach enjoy the sunshine which is set to continue throughout the long weekend. Photograph: PA
People on Bournemouth beach enjoy the sunshine which is set to continue throughout the long weekend. Photograph: PA

“It is a bank holiday weekend. There is a lot of sunshine about to be had but people need to exercise some common sense.”

She urged people to stay covered up at the beach, hydrated and also to keep safe by listening to any coastguard announcements.

The previous best August bank holiday temperatures before this weekend were 31.5 degrees at Heathrow in 2001.

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Revellers at the Notting Hill Carnival on Sunday and Monday - expected to number one million - have been advised to stay hydrated amid temperatures which are forecast to surpass 30 degrees on both days.

The Rhyl Air Show was delayed due to the weather, according to North Wales Police.

Denbighshire County Council said “unexpected sea fog” had hit the event and the visibility levels needed for display flying.

Performers at the Notting Hill Carnival in London, where people have been advised to stay hydrated amid temperatures of more than 30 degrees. Photograph: EPA
Performers at the Notting Hill Carnival in London, where people have been advised to stay hydrated amid temperatures of more than 30 degrees. Photograph: EPA

The late summer sunshine, as a result of warm air being dragged up over the UK from France, comes at the end of what has been a wet and chilly month so far.

A band of low pressure over Ireland has prevented temperatures reaching similar highs, with the country enjoying a warm, humid if overcast weekend.

The weather in Ireland is set to remain dry for the rest of the day with the best of the sunshine across the northeast with highs of 19 to 24 degrees.

A spokesman for the RAC has issued a warning to those using the roads in Britain during the heatwave.

RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said: “With summer returning in time for the weekend for many of us, it’s going to mean millions of us take to the road for day trips and short breaks.

“Unfortunately, as the temperature rises so can the chances of a breakdown - so it’s important drivers check over their vehicle before setting out. Tyre pressure and tread, as well as oil and coolant levels, should all be looked at and doing so can really cut the chances of breaking down.

“Hungry, thirsty or tired passengers can also be recipes for in-car irritability - and ‘carguments’ - so pack enough food and water to keep your passengers happy, and plan in enough breaks along the way.”

Temperatures in Britain are expected to rise even further by Monday, possibly reaching a late August bank holiday record high of 33 degrees - most likely in the south-east of England, the Met Office said.

In Ireland, Monday is set to be dry and sunniest in the east with highs of 18 to 21 degrees. It will be cloudier along western coastal counties. - PA