BRITS hit beaches across the country today at the start of a 36C heatwave – which forecasters warn could last into mid-August.
Sun-seekers flocked to coastal hotspots like Bournemouth and Devon as an 'African heatflare' prepares to blast the country.
Highs of 22C hit the South East today – although the weather was damp and drizzly in parts of the north.
According to the Met Office, temperatures will rise throughout the week, with a 60 per cent chance of heatwave conditions in London and the South East on Friday.
Met Office Meteorologist Bonnie Diamond told the Sun Online: "From Thursday we will start to get a southerly wind moving across the UK and that’s bringing warm air from the continent.
"It's going to feel warmer for all parts of the UK but particularly hot for southern and central England."
Forecasters have issued a Level 2 health warning for the hot blast, meaning authorities are on high alert to reduce harm for a heatwave.
Heatwaves can have serious health implications for some, so it is worth keeping an eye on the latest guidance from the Met Office and the NHS if you are thinking of going out.
Metereologist Marco Petagna told The Sun Online that things will hot up as the country gets closer to the weekend.
He said: "The trend is that things will get much warmer on Thursday, though there is a risk still of some cloud in the north west.
"For the north and the north-west temperatures will be hovering around the mid-20s.
"But the real heat and the best of the weather will be down south.
"On Thursday we're looking at highs of about 32C and on Friday we're looking at 34C-36C across southeastern areas, and possibly the odd 37C as well!"
And the warm weather could be here to stay.
A Met Office spokesman, told The Sun Online: “The spell of heat at the end of this week will remain in place longer than the very brief spell we saw last weekend.
“Parts of the south and east of England are likely to see the fine conditions remain into the early part of next week, although there is less certainty over the exact duration.”
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Weather Outlook forecaster Brian Gaze also said: “August could rescue summer.
“Computer models suggest a very warm or hot period from Thursday, lasting for as long as mid-month. 35C is possible again.”
It comes as the mercury hit 37.8C in London last week – making it the third-hottest day in the UK EVER.
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