Heatwave in Leeds could beat hottest ever recorded UK temperature this week
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Meteorologists have given an 80 per cent chance of the mercury topping the UK’s record temperature of 38.7C, as the current heatwave is set to peak on Tuesday.
The current record was set in Cambridge in 2019.
It comes after Government Ministers held an emergency Cobra meeting this weekend, after experts warned of record high temperatures in England next week that could put lives at risk.
Scorching temperatures on Monday and Tuesday
Scorching temperatures are predicted for Monday, with Peterborough expected to hit 37C and Milton Keynes, Norwich and Lincoln thought to hit 36C.
And temperatures are forecast to increase by several more degrees on Tuesday – up to the mid-30s for much of England and Wales.
There is a 50 per cent chance of temperatures reaching 40C somewhere in the UK that day, likely along the A1 corridor which runs from London to Scotland through counties including Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Yorkshire and the North East.
And in Leeds, temperatures could reach as high as 39C, according to some forecasts.
'Extreme heat' warning
Following the issuing of the Met Office’s first red warning for extreme heat, covering a swathe of England from London to Manchester and York on Monday and Tuesday, its chief executive Penny Endersby said people can find it hard to to know what to expect when “climate change has driven such unprecedented severe weather events”.
“Here in the UK we’re used to treating a hot spell as a chance to go and play in the sun,” she added.
“This is not that sort of weather.”
Cobra meeting reaction and advice in the heat
After chairing a Cobra meeting at the weekend, Mr Malthouse told the BBC: “Obviously the transport providers are messaging people that they should only travel if they really need to on Monday and Tuesday.
“Services are going to be significantly affected. The heat will affect rails, for example, so the trains have to run slower. There may be fewer services. People need to be on their guard for disruption.
“If they don’t have to travel, this may be a moment to work from home.”
Mr Malthouse said steps have been taken to ensure hospitals and ambulances that may come under pressure were prepared, while schools were being issued with guidance to enable them to remain open.
He added in a separate statement: “It’s important that we all continue to follow public health advice to keep cool, and take simple precautions like drinking lots of water and seeking shade, and also checking on vulnerable friends and neighbours.”