UK faces first heatwave of year with 28C sunshine 'for sustained period'

The UK is braced for a 25C roaster before the end of May - and it could get even hotter as the first heatwave of 2024 hits. James Madden, from Exacta Weather, reckons the country could be hit by a "sustained" period of hot weather with temperatures in the "high 20s" - for the first time this calendar year.

Writing on Facebook, Mr Madden said: “Following on from this will see high pressure and more settled weather finally beginning to take hold. However, it is still likely to be on the cool side to begin with, and before temperatures start to finally warm up significantly during the final third of April and into early May, as covered in all of our earlier and longer-range weather reports for in and 20th April onwards and preceding a cold period.

"It is within this period we could see maximum temperatures ranging in the mid to high 20's, at the very least for the first time this year and over a sustained time period." Mr Madden also expects this heat blast to last "over a sustained time period".

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The Met Office says: "A heatwave is an extended period of hot weather relative to the expected conditions of the area at that time of year, which may be accompanied by high humidity. A UK heatwave threshold is met when a location records a period of at least three consecutive days with daily maximum temperatures meeting or exceeding the heatwave temperature threshold."

Mr Madden added: "Summer 2024 is coming, and our forecast is now available, along with a potentially record heatwave in mid-summer and the dates + how hot it will get in the UK and Ireland." He went on: "Could there be another potentially historic heatwave or excessively hot temperatures for a sustained period this summer?"

Looking ahead from April 29 to mid-May, the BBC Weather team says: "Confidence in the forecasts for late April and early May continues to decline as increasingly uncertain weather patterns develop. The global models are more or less assuming a build-up or continuation of high pressure near the UK and a trough over southern and central Europe (high-over-low pattern). At the same time the low pressure over central Europe could later extend to parts of southern England.

"Temperatures are likely to be around average at first, with calmer and drier conditions expected mainly in the north and north-west, while the south could become wetter and windier. Temperatures could rise slightly above average in the second week of May.

"There is also the possibility that conditions will calm down overall from the beginning of May and temperatures will continue to rise, with the area of high pressure over Scandinavia continuing to establish itself and bringing a warm and dry easterly flow."