he UK has recorded its hottest day of the year for the third day in a row.
A high of 31.8C was recorded at Heathrow early on Friday afternoon – though the mercury is expected to climb further later in the day.
It beats the peak of 29.5C recorded at Northolt on Thursday afternoon.
An NHS ‘Level 3’ warning remains in force for London, the east and south east of England.
The Met Office says London and parts of the south east could see the mercury rise to 34C (93.2F). Such is the high heat, the London Fire Brigade is warning of an increased risk of fires due to the mini heatwave.
The surging temperatures come ahead of a planned Tube strike on June 21. Due to the planned walkout, Londoners have been advised not to travel on the Tube on Tuesday, while there are fears the national rail strikes between June 21-26 could harm school exams.
Sadiq Khan hopes unions will call off strike at the 11th hour
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, said he is encouraging the unions to meet with Transport for London in order to call off the strikes next week.
He told the BBC’s World At One programme: “I’m encouraging the RMT to meet with TfL before Tuesday to call these strikes off.
“The strikes next week are going to be so damaging to London’s economy, they are going to be incredibly inconvenient.
“The concerns the RMT have in relation to London are because of conditions attached by the Government in relation to the funding required because of the pandemic, so they’re pointing their anger at the wrong people. It’s the wrong people suffering.
“So in relation to the strikes in London, I’d encourage the RMT to meet with TfL.”
‘We’re keeping an eye on Ascot’, says Met Office
Stephen Dixon, spokesman for the Met Office, said: “One thing we are keeping an eye on is Royal Ascot.
“The highest maximum temperature we’ve had on a day is 32.8 degrees, which is taken from a nearby station in Reading near Royal Ascot.”
He added: “It’s looking like it could be around 31 degrees in Reading today, but I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of it perhaps rising into 32, and then obviously getting closer to that record, but it’s something that might be quite close to being the hottest Royal Ascot on record.”
Carrie Johnson arrives at Ascot
UK’s coldest areas revealed
As the South basks in sweltering heat, the mercury has barely risen into the teens in some areas of the UK.
Cairnwell, in the Eastern Scottish Highlands, has recorded a temperature of 10.6C at midday.
And in the Ballypatrick Forest, in Northern Ireland, temperatures have hovered around the 12.5C mark.
Temperatures surpass 30C at Heathrow
The UK has recorded its hottest day of the year for the third day in a row.
A high of 30.3C was recorded at Heathrow – though the mercury is expected to climb further later on.
It beats the peak of 29.5C recorded at Northolt on Thursday.
Watch: Friday’s full weather forecast
Temperatures to stay high overnight
While a high of 34C is expected today, the Met Office’s forecast states that temperatures will range between between 20-29C from 8pm to 7am tomorrow.
Latest Met Office forecast
Temperatures to exceed 2020 high
According to the BBC’s Nick Miller, temperatures today will exceed 2020’s summer high of 32.2C.
The mercury levels may even approach the hottest June day on record of 35.6C in Southampton in 1976, he reports.
Gatwick to limit number of flights over summer to avoid ‘cancellation chaos’
Gatwick bosses are to cap the number of planes that use the airport in July and August to avoid a repeat of the “cancellation chaos” that ruined the trips of thousands of holidaymakers over the Jubilee weekend.
Schedules will be trimmed to manageable levels that should prevent “on the day” cancellations at the airport over the summer peak.
July daily departures and arrivals will be limited to 825 rising to 850 in August. Previously Gatwick was planning to handle up to 900 flights on the busiest August days.
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