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UK weather: Country records hottest day of the year and it could get sunnier – despite thunderstorm threat

The UK has recorded the hottest day of the year so far – and the warm weather is set to continue despite forecasters predicting thunderstorms for parts of the country tomorrow.

A scorching 25.7C (78.3F) was recorded at Heathrow Airport at 2pm on Tuesday, surpassing the 25.1C (77.2F) – the previous hottest day of the year temperature – set in Kinlochewe, Scotland, on Bank Holiday Monday.

The sunny weather over the bank holiday weekend coincided with the easing of several lockdown measures, with thousands heading to beaches and parks to enjoy their new-found freedoms.

But despite the mercury set to climb even higher on Tuesday – with highs of up to 27C (80.6F), according to the Met Office – thunderstorms are likely across parts of southwest England and southwest Wales on Wednesday.

The Met Office has subsequently issued a yellow weather warning for these areas.

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Met Office meteorologist Alex Burkill said: "The thunderstorms could bring lots of lightning, some hail, as well as some heavy rain, and with the half term there is an increased number of tourists in this area.

"The thunderstorms do then push north-eastwards into the Midlands and across more of Wales, but they also ease and break up, so these places will see some showers but they won’t be as intense."

The thunderstorm warning from 5am to 11am warns of the possibility of short-term loss of power and other services as well as train delays and poor road conditions.

But Mr Burkill said that Wednesday was still likely to be hotter than Tuesday, with the possibility of a scorching 28C (82.4F) or 29C (84.2F) in some parts of the country.

The warmer conditions have been a welcome break following a wet and miserable May.

Average maximum temperatures for May were one of the lowest for the UK, with spring 2020 remaining the warmest spring on record.

Wales experienced the wettest May since records began in 1862, with 245mm of rainfall, and England had its fifth wettest May since 1967, with 111mm of rain.

The UK as a whole saw its fourth highest amount of rainfall recorded for the month, with an average of 120mm.

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