First published Monday 1 June 2015 in The Argus
Bookies have slashed the odds on Britain enjoying the hottest June on record as forecasters say a heatwave will send temperatures soaring.
Rain and gales which hit the Sussex coast yesterday will be replaced by blazing sunshine with the mercury expected to hit 28C (82F) this weekend, rivalling resorts in the Mediterranean.
Bookmakers Coral said with the fine weather expected to last all month “We think it could be the hottest in British history”.
Coral has cut the odds on the country enjoying the hottest June since records began in 1910 to 3-1 from 5-1 amid predictions a heatwave will sweep the nation.
And they have given odds of 10-1 that the UK mainland temperature exceeds 100F (37.8C) while it’s 12-1 that the UK record temperature high of 38.5C (101.3F) is broken.
As it stands the hottest June on record was in 1976, when the mercury soared to 35.6 (96F) in Southampton.
The 1976 heatwave went down in history as one of the driest, sunniest and warmest summers on record, plunging the country into a severe drought.
A hosepipe ban was imposed as emergency measures to conserve water were introduced – while a bumper sticker telling people to “Save Water, Bath With A Friend” did the rounds.
Met Office forecaster Marco Petagna said: “It is a real contrast in weather from the early part to the end of the week.
“Monday and Tuesday will be cool and often wet and windy. But then the high pressure starts to build across the UK and it certainly becomes very warm and locally hot in the South.
“Wednesday is the transition day from the unsettled to the better weather with temperatures reaching around 20C (68F) in the South.
“Friday into the weekend will see a much bigger increase with strong sunshine. Certainly it is good weather for getting out and about.
“May so far has been cool and the temperatures below average, so it is quite a contrast – a big change in the coming week.”