UK

UK Weather: Hottest Day Of The Year Expected

18/06/2013 21:51 BST | Updated 18/06/2013 21:54 BST

Britain is expected to bask in the hottest day of the year so far on Wednesday, as lingering clouds prevented temperatures rising above the current record, forecasters said.

Temperatures could reach highs of 26C (78F) or 27C (80F), according to MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association.

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More people could be enjoying this sort of weather on Wednesday

The sunshine struggled to break through the cloud on Tuesday, and the highest temperature recorded was 24C (75F) in Manchester - slightly below the record high of the year which was 25C (77F) on June 6 in Lee-On-Solent in Hampshire.

Matt Dobson, a forecaster at Meteogroup, explained that hopes of record breaking heat were dashed by cloud, but he was more optimistic about Wednesday.

"There were suggestions that the south east could have seen temperatures get to 25C but we've seen a lot of cloud lingering.

"It's knocked the temperatures on the head," he said.

"Tomorrow we've a better chance of beating 25C. It's more likely to happen in the London area or a few locations to the south and west of London."

Mr Dobson said this would be "sensitive to how much cloud there will be" though.

The forecaster added that there is a "good chance it will be the hottest day of the year".

Further north, temperatures will remain lower, with the driest weather expected in Wales, Northern Ireland and northern England.

North west Scotland will be the coolest region, Mr Dobson said.

The welcome warm blast follows what the Met Office said was the coldest spring since 1962, with a mean temperature across March, April and May of 6C (43F), 1.7C below the long-term average.