Thursday was the hottest day since records began – possibly.
Forecasters are scrambling to investigate a new provisional figures which emerged on Friday placing temperatures 0.2C above the previous record.
If validated the reading of 38.7C was recorded at the Cambridge University Botanic Garden would beat the highest temperature on record, which was 38.5 Celsius, recorded in Faversham in August 2003.
The delay in officially announcing the record is because weather boffins need to spend a few days analysing and carrying out quality control to ensure the recorded temperature is genuine.
On Thursday, official temperatures reached 38.1C in Cambridge, setting a new current record for the highest July temperature.
Dr Mark McCarthy from the National Climate Centre (NCIC) at the Met Office said it takes the the quality of its recordings “very seriously” given it is the official source of meteorological statistics for the UK.
“We are talking about a potential new record for the highest temperature recorded in the UK and we therefore need to thoroughly investigate the observation with our partners at Cambridge University Botanic Garden through statistical analysis and by visiting, to check the site and equipment and ensure there are no potential problems.”
“The Met Office observations team will carefully analyse this figure, along with any other readings submitted over the coming weeks and will keep the public, our partners and government updated.”