People walk past Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament in London today as the warm weather continues in the capital

UK heatwave: Temperatures are forecast to hit a record 104F next week

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Britain is set to endure its hottest day on record next week with unprecedented 41C (106F) highs on Monday or Tuesday, forecasters said today as schools offered children the day off and rail passengers were warned of chaos.

Meteorologists say there is now a 60 per cent chance of breaking the all-time UK record of 38.7C (101.6F) set in Cambridge on July 15, 2019 – a probability that has doubled since the start of this week when it was at 30 per cent.

Parts of London are now set to hit 41C (106F) next Monday and 39C (102F) on Tuesday, according to BBC Weather – both of which would break the record that overtook a previous high of 38.5C (101.3F) on August 10, 2003. 

Bookmaker Ladbrokes is now making it odds on at 1/2 that the UK’s hottest day on record will come next week. The warmth is coming up from Spain and Portugal which have also had a record heatwave with 47C (117F) highs.

The Met Office has warned of ‘widespread impacts on people and infrastructure’ from Sunday to Tuesday, which has led to Hammersmith Bridge being wrapped in silver insulation foil to reflect the sun during the heatwave.

The Grade II*-listed bridge in West London has had a £420,000 ‘temperature control system’ fitted to reduce stress on its cast-iron pedestals, on which fractures widened in an August 2020 heatwave and forced it to be shut.

The bridge – which was reopened to pedestrians, cyclists and river traffic in July 2021 – now has what the council labelled as a ‘giant air conditioning unit on each of the four pedestal chains’, which are anchored to the river bed and regulated to be kept under 13C (55F) in the summer. If any of them reach 18C (64F), the bridge will be shut.

The cooling system is now being run through the night and parts of the chains that are above the water level on the 135-year-old bridge over the River Thames are being wrapped in silver insulation foil which reflects the sun.

It comes as schools are preparing to send pupils home early, scrapping PE lessons and banning children from playing outside in a series of measures being considered as the country braces for the record-breaking heat.

Students at three primary schools in Herefordshire have already been told they will not be allowed to play outside after the Met Office issued a 72-hour amber warning for ‘extreme heat’ posing ‘a danger to life’ from Sunday. Schools are also encouraging pupils to wear a T-shirt and shorts instead of normal clothes to help them stay cool.

The Hereford Academy announced an earlier start and finish to the school day, while parents at Marlbrook, Little Dewchurch and St Martin’s primary schools were told PE lessons will be scrapped and pupils will not be allowed outside to play. A letter added: ‘We are also giving parents the option to keep children at home on Monday.’

Meanwhile Crestwood Community School in Eastleigh, Hampshire, is among the schools to cancel sports day, saying that ‘we do not feel that it is safe for students to be out in the heat all day, taking part in physical activity.’

In East London, the headteacher of Clapton Girls’ Academy warned of an early finish amid fears school facilities will be unable to cope with the heat. Anna Feltham told parents: ‘Already, many classrooms are very hot, even with fans, and students are struggling to keep cool, drink enough water and maintain concentration in lessons.

People walk past Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament in London today as the warm weather continues in the capital

People walk past Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament in London today as the warm weather continues in the capital

People walk across Westminster Bridge in London today as the warm weather continues in the capital

People walk across Westminster Bridge in London today as the warm weather continues in the capital

People walk across Westminster Bridge in London today as the warm weather continues in the capital

A runner make his way through barley fields at Dunsden in Oxfordshire today in the early morning sunshine

A runner make his way through barley fields at Dunsden in Oxfordshire today in the early morning sunshine

A runner make his way through barley fields at Dunsden in Oxfordshire today in the early morning sunshine

Two people taking a selfie opposite the Houses of Parliament in London today as the hot weather continues

Two people taking a selfie opposite the Houses of Parliament in London today as the hot weather continues

Two people taking a selfie opposite the Houses of Parliament in London today as the hot weather continues

Pastel-coloured skies at dawn at Dunsden in Oxfordshire today ahead of the Met Office heat warning beginning on Sunday

Pastel-coloured skies at dawn at Dunsden in Oxfordshire today ahead of the Met Office heat warning beginning on Sunday

Pastel-coloured skies at dawn at Dunsden in Oxfordshire today ahead of the Met Office heat warning beginning on Sunday

People walk alongside the River Thames this morning opposite the Houses of Parliament in London as the warmth continues

People walk alongside the River Thames this morning opposite the Houses of Parliament in London as the warmth continues

People walk alongside the River Thames this morning opposite the Houses of Parliament in London as the warmth continues

A fire coloured sky above St Mary's Lighthouse in Whitley Bay on the North East coast of England just before sunrise today

A fire coloured sky above St Mary's Lighthouse in Whitley Bay on the North East coast of England just before sunrise today

A fire coloured sky above St Mary’s Lighthouse in Whitley Bay on the North East coast of England just before sunrise today

A beautiful sunrise this morning in the Oxfordshire countryside at Dunsden as the warm weather continues

A beautiful sunrise this morning in the Oxfordshire countryside at Dunsden as the warm weather continues

A beautiful sunrise this morning in the Oxfordshire countryside at Dunsden as the warm weather continues

Meanwhile in Scotland... Fans shelter from the rain during day two of The Open at the Old Course at St Andrews today

Meanwhile in Scotland... Fans shelter from the rain during day two of The Open at the Old Course at St Andrews today

Meanwhile in Scotland… Fans shelter from the rain during day two of The Open at the Old Course at St Andrews today

‘Next week’s heatwave will make many teaching rooms unbearably hot by lesson two and five. We have reviewed a number of options but do not have sufficient ‘cool’ rooms to re-room lessons into.’

And Red Hall Primary School in Darlington has banned children from playing outside in the scorching heat unless they wear a hat, saying it was a ‘real concern’ that many pupils were attending school without one this week.

What are the potential impacts of extreme heat during amber warning?

The Met Office has issued an amber weather warning for extreme heat for the whole on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday – covering most of England and some of Wales. 

The extreme heat warning system ranges from yellow to red and indicates how likely and how much of an impact the weather will have on public life. An amber warning states that temperatures are likely to have a high impact.

The warning states the ‘extreme heat’ could lead to ‘widespread impacts on people and infrastructure’.

Forecasters say the heatwave could impact the health of everyone – not only the vulnerable – while it could also impact electricity, gas and water supplies. Here is how it could impact different parts of daily life:

RAIL TRAVEL

The Met Office says that delays and cancellations to rail travel are possible with ‘potential for significant welfare issues for those who experience even moderate delays’. 

Network Rail has warned that services across the UK may be subject to speed restrictions to avoid tracks buckling, with Avanti West Coast, South Western Railway and Heathrow Express among the operators warning of potential disruption. West Midlands Trains and London Northwestern Railway have already imposed limits on sections of their network this week.

ROADS 

The Met Office says that delays on roads and road closures are possible during the heat alert period. 

The RAC has urged motorists to ‘think carefully before they drive, and do everything they can to avoid a breakdown’. It says motorists should check the coolant and oil levels under the bonnet when the engine is cold. 

It added: ‘If temperatures were to go as high as around 40C as some are predicting, then people should question their decision to drive in the first place.’

Hampshire County Council is preparing to deploy gritters in response to melting roads, saying that the machines will be spreading light dustings of sand which ‘acts like a sponge to soak up excess bitumen’.

Motorists who find tar stuck to their tyres are advised to wash it off with warm soapy water.

AIRPORTS

The Met Office has warned that air travel could also be disruption during the heat. This is because planes can become too heavy to take off in very hot weather due to reduced air density resulting in a lack of lift.

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This happened during a heatwave in summer 2018 at London City Airport when some passengers had to be removed so the services become light enough to take off on the relatively short runway.

UTILITIES

The Met Office has warned that a failure of ‘heat-sensitive systems and equipment’ is possible. This could result in a loss of power and other essential services, such as water, electricity and gas. 

Hot weather can lead to high demand on the power network because people are turning on fans and air conditioning – and the heat can also lead to a drop in the efficiency of overhead power cables and transformers.

WORKPLACES

The Met Office says that ‘changes in working practices and daily routines will be required’ in the extreme heat. 

There is no specific law for a maximum working temperature, or when it is too hot to work.

But employers are expected to ensure that in offices or similar environments, the temperature in workplaces must be ‘reasonable’. Companies must follow follow health and safety laws which include keeping the temperature at a comfortable level, known as ‘thermal comfort’; and providing clean and fresh air.

The Trades Union Congress says that during heatwaves staff should be allowed to start work earlier, or stay later, leave jackets and ties in the wardrobe and have regular breaks. It is also calling for an absolute maximum indoor temperature of 30C (86F) – or 27C (81F) for strenuous jobs – to legally indicate when work should stop.

HEALTH 

The Met Office has said that adverse health effects could be ‘experienced by all, not just limited to those most vulnerable to extreme heat, leading to serious illness or danger to life’ during the amber warning. 

In addition, charity Asthma and Lung UK has warned up to three million asthma sufferers could be affected by high pollen levels, so should use their inhalers. 

SCHOOLS  

Plans to cope with the heat, created by the NHS and UKHSA, say children should not do ‘vigorous physical activity’ when temperatures rise above 30C (86F).

Some sports days have been cancelled this week, while official advice suggests moving school start, end and break times to avoid the hottest points in the day.

Official word from the Government on how schools should respond to the heat could be sent later this week – but it may be left to headteachers to decide.

Health chiefs fear the NHS will be overwhelmed by a number of heat-related casualties if the mercury does indeed rise to levels only usually seen at Death Valley in California, which is the world’s hottest place.

The Met Office warning from Sunday to Tuesday – which was issued earlier this week – said the weather could cause health problems across the population, not just among people vulnerable to extreme heat, leading to potentially serious illness or danger to life.

Rail firm Avanti West Coast has warned passengers who wish to use services between London Euston and Scotland to plan ahead due to the impact of the heat on rail lines. The company said that weekend services may be cancelled at short notice while journeys on Monday and Tuesday will be subject to amended timetables.

And parched rivers and reservoirs photographed this week have shown the reality of the bone-dry country.

Some parts of the UK have seen barely a drop of rain since the start of July, spelling issues for farmers after the first half of the year was one of the driest on record – and raising the prospect of still higher food prices.

With forecasters issuing doom-laden warnings of ‘hundreds if not thousands of excess deaths’ in a ‘frightening’ scorching hot spell beginning on Sunday, ministers yesterday held their second Cobra civil contingencies committee meeting of the week.

Teaching unions say the weather will make it ‘potentially dangerous’ for children to take part in physical activity in the blazing sunshine, while the NHS is facing a ‘surge’ in demand from heat-related conditions.

The Met Office is still predicting temperatures on Monday or Tuesday could exceed the record 38.7C (102F) recorded in Cambridge in 2019.

Forecasters say there is currently a 60 per cent chance of breaking this record. BBC Weather expects highs of 39C (102F) next Monday and 40C (104F) next Tuesday.

But the second heatwave in a week could end with a bang with the prospect a wave of thunderstorms.

Reservoirs were yesterday particularly low in Yorkshire, where five million customers have been warned that a hosepipe ban – a measure not seen in Britain for a decade – cannot be ruled out. 

Others in the Peak District appeared down to little more than a trickle, although ministers say they are ‘not concerned’ about water supplies.

Some rivers were also running dry, with water levels on the Waveney in Suffolk ‘exceptionally low’ at around 30 per cent of normal for the time of year, according to the Environment Agency.

East Anglia as a whole has seen two-thirds of its average rainfall over the first half of the year – the driest January to June period since 1996, and the 11th driest since records began in 1836.

Meanwhile Wales – normally the wettest part of Britain – also saw far less rainfall than normal between March and June, with the River Teifi in Ceredigion at record low levels.

Fishing has been banned in the rivers Wye and Usk, with exceptionally warm water already killing fish.

West Sussex, the Isle of Wight and the City of London all recorded just 0.1mm (0.003ins) of rain between July 1 and July 12, according to the Met Office.

Across England, average rainfall in the first 12 days of the month was 5.1mm (0.2 ins), less than a tenth of the average for the whole of July, 66.48mm (2.62ins).

Wales was also far drier than normal, with 8.8mm (0.35ins) of rain compared to an average across July of 98.56mm (3.88ins).

With the exception of Yorkshire Water, which has seen reservoirs dwindle to levels not seen since 1995, water companies around the UK say supplies are still healthy – although all have urged customers to cut down on how much they use during sunny weather.

Farmers have warned the dry soil could cut yields of barley, wheat and other crops, potentially further exacerbating the cost of living crisis.

Robert Anthony, who farms more than 1,200 hectares in the Vale of Glamorgan, said the lack of rainfall ‘is having a huge impact on all our crops’.

Rhys Lougher, who has a herd of 120 dairy cows near Bridgend, South Wales, said milk yield has dropped by five litres a day per cow as the animals struggle in the heat.

‘They can cope with the odd hot day, but a prolonged spell takes its toll and we are worried about this weekend,’ he told Farmers’ Weekly.

Richard Bramley, chairman of the National Farmers’ Union’s environment forum, said the industry’s approach to water management was ‘way behind’ the challenges of a changing climate.

The end of this week has seen near-average temperatures and a scattering of showers following four consecutive days of temperatures above 30C (86F).

But an ‘amber’ extreme heat warning remains in place for much of England and Wales from Sunday through to Tuesday night.

It prompted former BBC weatherman John Hammond to warn of ‘hundreds if not thousands of excess deaths’ next week in ‘frightening’ heat.

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He told GB News yesterday: ‘We all like nice weather but this will not be nice weather, this will be potentially lethal weather for a couple of days. It will brief, but it will be brutal.

 ’40C (104F) is the sort of temperature that this country, I’m afraid, is just not geared up to cope with. So if you’re an employer, I’d be worried about early next week how your workers are going to safely get to work.

Hammersmith Bridge in West London, picturd today, has been wrapped in silver insulation foil to reflect the sun amid the heat

Hammersmith Bridge in West London, picturd today, has been wrapped in silver insulation foil to reflect the sun amid the heat

Hammersmith Bridge in West London, picturd today, has been wrapped in silver insulation foil to reflect the sun amid the heat

The Grade II*-listed Hammersmith Bridge in West London has had a £420,000 'temperature control system' fitted

The Grade II*-listed Hammersmith Bridge in West London has had a £420,000 'temperature control system' fitted

The Grade II*-listed Hammersmith Bridge in West London has had a £420,000 ‘temperature control system’ fitted

The 'temperature control system' fitted to Hammersmith Bridge is intended to reduce stress on its cast-iron pedestals

The 'temperature control system' fitted to Hammersmith Bridge is intended to reduce stress on its cast-iron pedestals

The ‘temperature control system’ fitted to Hammersmith Bridge is intended to reduce stress on its cast-iron pedestals

Hammersmith Bridge now has what the council labelled as a 'giant air conditioning unit on each of the four pedestal chains'

Hammersmith Bridge now has what the council labelled as a 'giant air conditioning unit on each of the four pedestal chains'

Hammersmith Bridge now has what the council labelled as a ‘giant air conditioning unit on each of the four pedestal chains’

Parts of the chains that are above the water level on Hammersmith Bridge are being wrapped in silver foil to reflect the sun

Parts of the chains that are above the water level on Hammersmith Bridge are being wrapped in silver foil to reflect the sun

Parts of the chains that are above the water level on Hammersmith Bridge are being wrapped in silver foil to reflect the sun

Hammersmith Bridge in West London has been wrapped in silver insulation foil to reflect the sun during the heatwave

Hammersmith Bridge in West London has been wrapped in silver insulation foil to reflect the sun during the heatwave

Hammersmith Bridge in West London has been wrapped in silver insulation foil to reflect the sun during the heatwave

Hammersmith Bridge has been wrapped in silver insulation foil and fitted with a £420,000 'temperature control system'

Hammersmith Bridge has been wrapped in silver insulation foil and fitted with a £420,000 'temperature control system'

Hammersmith Bridge has been wrapped in silver insulation foil and fitted with a £420,000 ‘temperature control system’

‘And if you’re an employee, then I would be asking my employer with potentially railway lines going buckled and lots of infrastructure disruption, how am I going to get to work, should I be getting to work?’

What are Britain’s ten hottest days on record? 

1)   38.7C – July 25, 2019

2)   38.5C – August 10, 2003

3)   37.8C – July 31, 2020

4)   37.1C – August 3, 1990

=5)  36.7C – July 1, 2015

=5)  36.7C – August 9, 1911

7)   36.6C – August 2, 1990

8)   36.5C – July 19, 2006

=9)  36.4C – August 7, 2020

=9)  36.4C – August 6, 2003

After chairing a second meeting of Cobra yesterday, Cabinet Office minister Kit Malthouse said the Government was preparing for a ‘surge’ in demand on the NHS and other services.

He told BBC Radio 4’s The World At One that ‘individual behavioural change’ was of ‘critical’ importance.

That meant doing ‘all the stuff they would do when it is very hot – wear a hat, drink water’, but also keeping an eye on vulnerable groups such as the elderly and young babies.

However he insisted water supplies nationally were ‘fine’, saying ‘at the moment we are not concerned’.

Mr Malthouse said: ‘The key thing we can do is prepare the Government services for what may be a surge in demand – not least the health service and elsewhere – but also critically communicate that the first line of defence is actually individual behavioural change.

‘People need to take care, do all the stuff they would do when it is very hot – wear a hat, drink water – but critically also (with) the most vulnerable groups – the elderly, those with cardiovascular problems and the very young – that people look out for them and take care.’

And he warned: ‘The current forecast is that we will be in the mid to high-30s but there is a smaller possibility that we could exceed that and possibly hit 40C which would be an all-time record.’

Experts describe extreme heat as a ‘silent killer’, with more than 2,500 heat-related deaths recorded in England in the summer of 2020.

Unions have urged firms to allow staff to work from home or leave the office early to avoid overheating, with some firms already telling staff not to come to work on Monday.

Caroline Abrahams, charity director at Age UK, urged people to check on older relatives, friends and neighbours to see if they needed anything during the high heat.

Heat is set to hit Avanti West Coast rail services 

An Avanti West Coast train at Wolverhampton station (file)

An Avanti West Coast train at Wolverhampton station (file)

An Avanti West Coast train at Wolverhampton station (file)

A rail firm is warning of disruption to major train lines, cancellations at short notice and extended journey times as temperatures are set to soar over the coming days.

Avanti West Coast warned passengers who wish to use services between London Euston and Scotland to plan ahead due to the impact of the heat on rail lines.

The company tweeted yesterday that services on Saturday and Sunday may be cancelled at short notice. It also warned that services on next Monday and Tuesday will be subject to amended timetables and extended journey times.

Steel rails absorb heat easily and tend to hover around 20C above the surrounding air temperature, according to Network Rail.

With temperatures as high as 40C (104F) expected in London early next week, the hot weather – particularly direct sunlight – could cause track temperatures to reach up to 50C (122F). In such conditions, rails can bend, flex and, in some cases, buckle from the heat. Trains, therefore, run at slower speeds in extremely hot weather to put less strain on the rails.

Network Rail’s west coast south route director James Dean said: ‘Keeping passengers moving is always our top priority. But we want people to be prepared.

‘If the soaring temperatures do lead to us having to put in place slower speeds for safety reasons, please bear with us while our engineers work to fix the problem. It may mean some journeys take longer. For those who must travel by rail, we’d remind people to carry some water with them so they can stay hydrated and always check before travelling so they know exactly what to expect.’

‘Any older person who is already coping with significant health issues, especially if they impact their heart or their lungs, is going to find the coming heatwave a challenge,’ she warned.

Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the NEU teaching union, said the weather would make it ‘potentially dangerous’ for school children to take part in physical activity in the sun – although most will already have held their summer sports days.

Wales’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer told BBC Radio Wales that ‘people will need to change some of their plans’, with official advice warning against vigorous activities at school.

Already organisers of tomorrow’s, Rabbit Run through sand dunes at Merthyr Mawr, near Bridgend, have been advised to reduce their normal pace.

Owners have also been asked to take extra care of animals at the Royal Welsh Show next week.

Met Office forecaster Aidan McGivern said there would be a ‘notable decline’ in temperatures from midweek, with the ‘most likely scenario’ seeing a ‘vortex’ of moisture-laden air swirling up from the Bay of Biscay, bringing with it thundery showers.

And climate change lecturer John Grant told the Mirror: ‘I think hundreds are going to die in the UK if not ­thousands, that’s my fear if we hit temperatures of 40C (104F).

‘It’s terrifying what will happen if we don’t have a management plan and get cooling centres ready.’

Today will begin with outbreaks of showery rain moving south-east across northern and central areas of the UK.

Meanwhile, people in the South and South West can expect warm sunshine.

London is forecast to experience 26C (79F) today, while 23C (73F) is predicted for Cardiff, 20C (68F) in Belfast and 19C (66F) in Edinburgh.

Saturday is also set to start with overcast skies and scattered showers in northern areas, before turning dry across the nation as the extreme heat moves in.

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Despite the recent heat, June 17 still stands as the hottest day of 2022 so far when 32.7C (90.9F) was recorded in London. But this high will almost certainly be broken over the coming days.

Also today, vets warned owners of rabbits and other small animals such as guinea pigs to take extra care to protect them from heatstroke and even death.

Dr Samantha Butler-Davies, veterinary clinical services manager at Vets4Pets, said: ‘The warmer weather can be incredibly dangerous for our furry friends including rabbits and other small animals such as guinea pigs.

‘Simply put, the hot weather poses a genuine risk of death for rabbits. The temperature of their homes can increase rapidly in warm weather and a hot garden with no shelter can soon turn into a death trap if your rabbits don’t have access to cool areas.’

NHS faces ‘surge’ in demand during heatwave

The NHS is facing a ‘surge’ in demand from the heatwave, amid warnings extreme temperatures next week could cause death, illness and disruption.

An ‘amber’ extreme heat warning for much of England and Wales is in place for Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, with temperatures likely to peak in excess of 35C (95F) across southern, central and eastern areas of England.

The Met Office warning says the extreme heat could cause health problems across the population, not just among people vulnerable to extreme heat, leading to potential serious illness or danger to life.

People are being urged to stay out of the sun in the middle of the day, stay hydrated, look out for vulnerable people, never leave children or pets in a parked car, and keep curtains closed to keep out the sun.

Caroline Abrahams, charity director at Age UK, urged people to check on older relatives, friends and neighbours to see if they needed anything during the high heat.

‘Any older person who is already coping with significant health issues, especially if they impact their heart or their lungs, is going to find the coming heatwave a challenge,’ she warned.

The Cabinet Office minister Kit Malthouse has said the Government is preparing for a ‘surge’ in demand on the NHS and other services due to the expected heatwave.

After chairing a meeting of the Cobra civil contingencies committee in Whitehall, Mr Malthouse urged the public to look out for people who were particularly vulnerable in the heat.

‘The key thing we can do is prepare the Government services for what may be a surge in demand – not least the health service and elsewhere – but also critically communicate that the first line of defence is actually individual behavioural change,’ he told BBC Radio 4’s The World At One.

‘People need to take care, do all the stuff they would do when it is very hot – wear a hat, drink water – but critically also (with) the most vulnerable groups – the elderly, those with cardiovascular problems and the very young – that people look out for them and take care.’

Vets also warned Britons to protect rabbits from ‘flystrike’ – when flies lay eggs in rabbit fur which then hatch into maggots that burrow into the skin, which can cause irreparable damage, severe illness and death.

They said live maggots are the most obvious signs of flystrike, but owners should also look out for rabbits becoming quiet or tired, a loss of appetite or not drinking, and a strong smell coming from them or their living space.

Drivers with older cars have been warned to consider alternative methods of travelling during the extreme temperatures.

Edmund King, the organisation’s president, told the Daily Telegraph: ‘People who’ve got an older car, maybe the air conditioning doesn’t work, maybe it hasn’t been serviced for a while – the likelihood of it overheating is higher.

‘The risks are things like melting roads, getting stuck in traffic and then having problems, but you can drive in these temperatures – but your car has got to be in good shape.

‘I would say as a general rule of thumb cars over 10 years old might be the ones with problems. Most cars within the last ten years will probably have air conditioning, will probably be relatively reliable, as long as they’ve been looked after.’

He also encouraged people to leave early in the morning or later in the evening, particularly if travelling with children.

Meanwhile Gatwick Airport yesterday ran out of water as families flew out as the south east experiences one of the hottest heatwaves in years.

A burst water main nearby disrupted the supply from SES Water, leaving only a limited number of toilets working at Britain’s second busiest airport.

Gatwick apologised to passengers and said it was distributing bottled water.

Raquel Rodrigues, 49, from Worthing and flying to Spain, said: ‘We had a flight cancelled already and now there are no toilets.

‘There are only two working in the whole terminal and you can imagine what the queues are like.’

A Gatwick spokesman said: ‘An issue with the supply of SES Water to Gatwick and the surrounding area this morning has led to lower water pressure than normal across the airport. 

‘We are working closely with SES Water to ensure this issue is resolved as quickly as possible.

‘Bottled water is being made available to passengers and staff across the airport and other contingency measures are being put in place to ensure the welfare of our passengers.’

A spokesman for SES Water said: ‘We have identified a burst water main in Shipley Bridge, Crawley, and are working hard to resolve this.’

YESTERDAY - People sit on Bournemouth beach in Dorset yesterday as they make the most of the very hot weather in England

YESTERDAY - People sit on Bournemouth beach in Dorset yesterday as they make the most of the very hot weather in England

YESTERDAY – People sit on Bournemouth beach in Dorset yesterday as they make the most of the very hot weather in England

YESTERDAY - A woman sunbathes on Bournemouth beach yesterday as the very hot conditions continue for the country

YESTERDAY - A woman sunbathes on Bournemouth beach yesterday as the very hot conditions continue for the country

YESTERDAY – A woman sunbathes on Bournemouth beach yesterday as the very hot conditions continue for the country

YESTERDAY - Stormy skies and a rainbow are seen at Marsden Bay near South Shields in Tyne and Wear yesterday evening

YESTERDAY - Stormy skies and a rainbow are seen at Marsden Bay near South Shields in Tyne and Wear yesterday evening

YESTERDAY – Stormy skies and a rainbow are seen at Marsden Bay near South Shields in Tyne and Wear yesterday evening

Parents at Marlbrook, Little Dewchurch and St Martin's primary schools in Hereford were told PE lessons will be scrapped and pupils will not be allowed outside to play. A letter added: 'We are also giving parents the option to keep children at home'

Parents at Marlbrook, Little Dewchurch and St Martin's primary schools in Hereford were told PE lessons will be scrapped and pupils will not be allowed outside to play. A letter added: 'We are also giving parents the option to keep children at home'

Parents at Marlbrook, Little Dewchurch and St Martin’s primary schools in Hereford were told PE lessons will be scrapped and pupils will not be allowed outside to play. A letter added: ‘We are also giving parents the option to keep children at home’

Meanwhile Toolstation revealed that sales of fans have risen by 641 per cent over the last week compared to the week before as tradesmen and women struggle to stay cool.

The company also said sales of builders’ shorts have increased by 50 per cent and T-shirts by 35 per cent. 

Sales of smart tech that controls temperatures has increased by 95 per cent and water cans by 21 per cent. Meanwhile sales of ride on mowers are up by 11 per cent and hose reels have increased by 56 per cent.

Experts have warned of the need to adapt homes, cities and infrastructure in the UK for a future of more intense and deadly summer heat. 

Professor Emily Shuckburgh, from the University of Cambridge, said: ‘Extreme heat is a silent killer with more than 2,500 heat-related deaths recorded in England in summer 2020, with the elderly especially vulnerable. Climate change is meaning life-threatening heatwaves are becoming more intense and more frequent.’

She said the ‘descent into a dangerous future’ could only be halted by a rapid transition to net zero, and said solutions such as providing more green space in cities could both cut climate emissions and limit the impacts of extreme temperatures.

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