Health warnings have been issued across Britain as our normally temperate island braces itself for weather hotter than the Sahara desert for the next few days.
Staycation timeshare owners will be basking in temperatures as high as Dubai’s – even most of the Mediterranean was cooler than London earlier this week.
Soaring temperatures have meant that the UK saw thermometers rise to its hottest ever on July 1st.
Public Health England warned people to stay out of direct sunlight between 11am and 3pm, while the baking conditions led train companies to cancel services over the fear that tracks could buckle in the heat.
There were also concerns that the sweltering heat could lead to more deaths than usual and cause dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Children, young babies and the elderly are particularly vulnerable and Public Health England was forced to issue a level 2 alert, which means that there is a 60% chance of temperatures being high enough to affect health.
The British Lung Foundation also urged Brits with breathing conditions to stay inside during the hottest periods.
Vicky Barber said: “People with respiratory conditions such as COPD or severe asthma may find it harder to breathe, feel more tired, or find their lungs feeling heavy or tight.
“People living with a lung condition can help avoid the impact of hot weather by taking some simple steps such as avoiding going outside at mid-day, the hottest time of day, and only doing excessive physical activity during the cooler ends of the day.”
Yet in spite of the predicted three-week heatwave, the Met Office has still warned of localised floods when heavy rain does fall in short bursts.
Thunderstorms could dump up to 60mm of rain this week in parts of northern England and southern Scotland.
Met Office forecaster Nicola Willis said:
“The London area looks hottest, with 29-30C widely from Kent to the East Midlands and Wimbledon could well see 33-35C.
“It will be intense heat with strong sunshine, high humidity and UV and not much breeze.”