A heatwave is currently sweeping across the UK and after a weekend of wall-to-wall sunshine, temperatures set to reach 33C later this week – making it hotter than Athens in Greece, and on a par with Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia and Rio in Brazil.
Temperatures peaked on Monday at 30.1C in Hampton in west London, with all of the UK enjoying a rain-free sunny start to the week.
Meteorologist Alex Burkill said: ‘At the moment it looks like that will be the general theme through much of July,.
‘Generally it looks like it will stay drier and warmer than average.’
The highest temperature recorded in the UK before Monday was 29.1 Celsius at St James Park, central London, on April 19.
However, the soaring temperatures are not good news for everyone, with hay fever sufferers urged to do everything they can to minimise the effects of a very high pollen count.
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The Met Office’s heat-health watch alert is currently at level two, meaning social and healthcare services are at the ready to reduce harm from a potential heatwave.
Police have urged people to be careful of the temptation to swim in open water in the hot weather.
Surrey Police said: ‘With the warm weather, we are reminding people of the dangers of swimming in open water.’
The warning came after the body of a man was recovered from a lake in Nutfield on Monday.
A search for a missing child at Westport Lake in Stoke-on-Trent resumed on Tuesday morning, after emergency services were called on Monday to reports that three children were in distress in the water.
Two of the children are safe and well, Staffordshire Police said.
Dr Thomas Waite of Public Health England urged people to keep in mind those who may be vulnerable, including the elderly, young children and those with underlying health conditions for whom he said “the summer heat can bring real health risks”.
He added: ‘That’s why we’re urging everyone to keep an eye on those you know who may be at risk this summer.
‘If you’re able, ask if your friends, family or neighbours need any support.’
The TUC has called on bosses to make sure staff working outdoors are protected from the sun and the heat.
Workers including builders, agricultural workers and gardeners who are outside for lengthy periods in high temperatures are at risk of sunstroke, sunburn and skin cancer, the union organisation warned.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: ‘We all love to see the sunshine, but working outdoors in sweltering conditions can be unbearable and dangerous.
‘Bosses must ensure their staff are protected with regular breaks, lots of fluids, plenty of sunscreen and the right protective clothing.’