UK Weather: How Brits used to deal with a heatwave – from swimming in the River Thames to Butlin's fountains

AS THE UK is having a heatwave the past few days, with temperatures soaring to the high 30s, Brits are looking for ways to cool down.

But have you ever wondered how people used to deal with extreme heat back in the day?



Fountains were a good solution as a photo from May 18, 1948, shows a group of five women posing in colourful swimming costumes on a fountain outside Butlins in Clacton on Sea.

Another image shows four boys in shorts stood in front of a sentry in full sweltering uniform outside Buckingham Palace on August 7, 1937.

A great way to cool down was to be near the Thames- a picture shows children and young adults splashing around in front of Tower Bridge.

An artist in swimming trunks was pictured painting at the Serpentine bathing area while pupils at Bow Road Open Air School made the most of the heatwave while exercising.

For it to officially be a heatwave in the UK, there must be three days or more of temperatures that exceed the heatwave threshold.

Interestingly, these thresholds actually vary from county to county across the UK.

In Lincolnshire, temperatures must be above 25 degrees Celsius, whereas in London temperatures must exceed 28 degrees Celsius.

The hottest ever recorded summer in the UK was the summer of 1976, with the summers of 1995 and 2018 tied for second place.

The hottest temperature recorded in 2018 was 35.6 degrees Celsius in Felsham, Suffolk.

The UK is currently baking after the hottest day of the year was recorded on Tuesday with the mercury rising to a scorching 32C.




The sizzling weather prompted the Met Office to issue out its first amber extreme heat warning.

The warning is in place in central and southern England, Wales and Northern Ireland until Friday with the temperatures expected to reach 33C.

However, the extreme weather is set to end this weekend with thunderstorms bound to sweep the country, especially in the South.

But the Met Office has warned another heatwave is on the way next month.

Brits are set to face another round of high temperatures in August which is expected to last two whole weeks.

It predicts that from August 2 to August 16, that: "Into early August, warmer and drier-than-average conditions look likely to return for much of the UK.''

It continued: "By mid-August confidence becomes rather low, but with changeable conditions most likely.

"Above-average temperatures continue to be signalled for much of the period, perhaps becoming very warm or hot at times in the south."

Public Health England has extended its heat-health warning, which warns people to take measures to stay cool and look out for vulnerable people, until Friday.

It comes as bookies have slashed odds to just 10/11 on this month being the hottest July on record.

Along with the amber extreme heat warning, there is also a yellow warning for rain in place from Saturday across much of England and Wales.

 It follows a thunderstorm in Leicester where residents saw hail the "size of golf balls."



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