UK

UK Weather Forecasts Warmest Day Of The Year Leaves Britain Hotter Than Athens Or Rome

15/04/2015 13:56 BST | Updated 15/04/2015 17:59 BST

Britain is today basking in the warmest day of the year so far – and it’s possible the mercury could rise even higher before the day is out.

The 23.2C (74F) recorded at Gravesend, Kent, surpassed 2015's previous peak of 22.8 (73F) detected yesterday.

Forecasts suggest highs of close to 26C (79F) are possible and Met Office spokesman Dan Williams said he would be "amazed" if higher temperatures are not recorded during the afternoon.

hottest day of the year

The sun rises over Tynemouth on the North East coast on Wednesday

Several other areas are enjoying summery conditions, with the mercury hitting the low 20s across the southern half of the country.

It means parts of Britain were hotter than Athens (19C), Istanbul (14C) and Rome (17C).

But not everyone was enjoying warm weather, with temperatures in Scotland struggling to surpass 11C (52F) and highs of around 14C (57F) in north east England.

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The sizzling conditions are not expected to develop into a heatwave but a "settled" picture is likely to continue into next week.

Mr Williams said: "It will be slightly cooler, with temperatures not quite as high, but it will be mainly dry and fine for the foreseeable future."

He said it is currently "very warm" for the time of the year but the conditions are "not unprecedented".

Yesterday, police smashed the windows of a car to free a baby during the hot weather.

Scotland Yard said officers were called at around 12.35 to Surbiton, south west London, following reports that a driver had accidentally locked her keys in her car while her child was inside.

A spokeswoman said: "The decision was taken to force entry to the vehicle. The child did not require any medical treatment."