'Feasible' that 40C hits UK this summer after 'disappointing' July, Met Office says

19 July 2023, 09:29

It comes Europe bakes in 45C heat
It comes Europe bakes in 45C heat. Picture: Getty
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

It remains 'feasible but unlikely' that 40C heat will hit the UK this summer, the Met Office has said.

According the Met Office's Grahame Madge, there is currently "no forecast signal" for temperatures to hit 40C in the UK, though it is likely to get warmer towards the end of August.

Temperatures in the UK have largely remained in the lows 20s so far this summer, with many areas in the UK hit by periodic showers and even thunderstorms.

"There is no forecast signal for temperatures to reach last year’s threshold this year," Mr Madge said.

"The chance of reaching 40C is around one per cent, so it is unlikely in any given year, but of course, it remains feasible."

It remains 'feasible' that 40C could return to the UK after record highs last year
It remains 'feasible' that 40C could return to the UK after record highs last year. Picture: Getty

It comes exactly one year after record temperatures hit the UK.

The highest temperature ever recorded in the UK was 40.3C on Lincolnshire on July 19 in 2022.

Before that, it was 38.7C in Cambridge in 2019.

In London last year, extreme temperatures contributed to a number of fires breaking out across the capital.

Read More: London Fire Brigade ‘prepared’ for heatwaves with new specialist training after UK wildfire destroyed 16 homes last year

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It comes as Europe prepares for record-breaking temperatures, where the Charon heatwave has just got underway.

The previous record temperature in Europe was 48.8C in Italy in 2021, though some experts believe this may be broken.

High temperatures in Europe are being driven by settled conditions under an upper ridge sat across the continent - pushing temperatures up.

There are also "unusually high" surface sea temperatures, exacerbating the effects of the heatwave.

But, according to the Met Office, the southern shift of the Jet Stream that has pushed the high pressure southwards across this region has also led to low pressure systems being directed into the UK, bringing more unsettled and cooler weather.