How hot is it in the UK today? Weather forecast for Tuesday, June 23

THIS week is set to be a scorcher with highs of 34C on Thursday.

So how much hotter will it get today and what can we expect for the rest of the summer?

How hot will it be today and will it rain?

According to the Met office, it will be cloudy across the northwest half of the UK with some rain or drizzle at times.

However the rest of us will see a fair bit of sun with things heating up around the afternoon.

Temperatures will stay between 13 and the high 20's throughout the day and into the night.

The skies will remain cloudy in the northwest tonight with further rain or drizzle at times.

But there will be clear skies coming in first thing across the UK with the odd fog patch forming by dawn.

What is the summer forecast?

Rather mixed conditions are forecast in much of June and July. August is expected to be the most settled month. Nonetheless, a warmer than average summer with a reasonable number of fine periods is favoured.

The temperature is predicted to sit comfortably above the 30 year average but there will at least be a little rain to keep us cool every now and then over the three month period as a whole.

Expect an odd mix of slightly more heat and slightly more rain than most years this July.

August will however be a total scorcher, with less rain than we'd normally get and way higher temperatures.

What is a heatwave?

The World Meteorological Organisation definition of a heatwave is "when the daily maximum temperature of more than five consecutive days exceeds the average maximum temperature by 5C, the normal period being 1961-1990".

They are most common in summer when high pressure develops across an area.

High-pressure systems are slow-moving and can persist over an area for a prolonged period of time such as days or weeks.

They can occur in the UK due to the location of the jet stream, which is usually to the north of the UK in the summer.

This can allow high pressure to develop over the UK resulting in persistent dry and settled weather.

When was the hottest heatwave in UK history?

The scorching summer of 1976 was the hottest summer since records began.

It led to a severe drought owing to the exceptionally dry conditions, although it is thought that 1995 was drier.

In the summer of 1976, Heathrow had 16 consecutive days over 30C from June 23 to July 8, and for 15 consecutive days from June 23 to July 7 temperatures reached 32.2C somewhere in England.

But the single hottest temperature of 38.5C was set on August 10, 2003.

What should you do during a heatwave?

When the mercury shoots up there are several obvious precautions to take.

It is advised to make sure you drink a lot of water to make sure you stay hydrated during the hot spell.

Keeping feet cool and running cold water on your wrists can also help.

Keeping a bottle of sunscreen with you to soak up those UV rays is also highly advisable as is ensuring you have a hat to prevent sunstroke.

If you are working in an office, ask whether there is air conditioning that can be used.

If you're travelling by public transport, try and travel at hours which will be less crowded, so the risk of overheating is less likely.

There are no maximum temperatures in place for work and school environments but employers and education facilities have to provide "clean, fresh air".

The National Union of Teachers said special measures should be put in place to reduce temperatures as soon as staff complain about feeling uncomfortable.

Special measures can include electric fans and relaxing uniform restrictions.

Parents should also make sure their kids are well equipped in a heatwave, with a hat and sunscreen if they are likely to be playing outdoors.

Using electric fans – including hand-held ones – can help move the air and cool a person down.

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