Temperatures in Britain are hotter than in Antigua with a ‘second summer’ starting now to bring 12 days of sunshine.
Tuesday nudged the hottest September 15 for almost 200 years, with 30.6C recorded – the record since Met Office records began in 1841.
Even the northern parts of the country saw 25C as Hurricane Paulette pumps tropical air north.
Meanwhile temperatures in Antigua were at a 29C.
The weather is the warmest it’s been for a month, since early August, after cool washouts spoilt the end of school holidays.
The Met Office forecast 28C today then 24-25C daily for the rest of the week and into next week, with plenty of sunshine and dry skies for most.
Hurricane Paulette, churning into the mid-Atlantic, will suck up hot air towards Britain and strengthen a dry high pressure zone over the UK, BBC Weather said.
A 1,500 mile-wide ‘Saharan spurt’ of hot air is making temperatures up to 11C hotter than the 20C average.
The Met Office forecast a warmer-than-normal three months through autumn, from September to November.
A Met Office forecaster said: “There is plenty of sunshine this week and dry weather with sunny spells is likely to continue through next week.
“Above-average temperatures are likely for many and it could be very warm in the South.”
Met Office forecaster Marco Petagna added: “Decent spells of fine weather are expected in the rest of September.”
The Weather Outlook forecaster Brian Gaze said: “Warm and sunny weather ahead will feel like a second summer after wet and windy conditions dogged the second half of school holidays.”
Ex-BBC and Met Office forecaster John Hammond of weathertrending said: “We’ll inevitably hear the phrase ‘Indian Summer.’”
BBC Weather said: “Strong high pressure ahead is partly due to warm air from Paulette.”
But the heat is delaying trains – as some train speeds were halved as rails risk buckling.
Network Rail tweeted: “Due to hot weather, a speed restriction is in place at Northampton. Trains may be delayed.”
It said “direct sunshine” causes more problems than hot but cloudy conditions.
The company added: “Rails in direct sunshine can be 20C hotter than air temperature.”
Speed restrictions are imposed as slower trains exert lower forces on the track, reducing the chance of buckling.”
-- to www.mirror.co.uk