Hot May weather to continue into next week

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Media captionSummery scenes from Aberdeen, Weston-super-Mare and London

Much of the UK has been basking in warm weather which is likely to continue into next week.

But the high temperatures have come soon after a cold April and early May.

The temperature in Altnaharra in the Highlands has reached 27.3C, up from 9C a week ago, but still short of the record May high for Scotland of 29C.

BBC duty weather manager Mike Silverstone said the hot weather had spread to the UK from Scandinavia and eastern Europe.

This year has seen the UK's third warmest March since records began and the wettest April for 100 years, which was also the coldest for 23 years.

Average temperatures were warmer in March than April but Mr Silverstone said the weather can be varied during the spring.

"We have had an 18C leap in Altnaharra but it's not unusual," he said.

"May can be quite a fickle month, one week it can be very cold and then the next it can be warm.

"This month we've more or less gone from mid-winter to mid-summer in the space of a week."

'Good streak'

The average daytime temperature in London in May is 19C and the average for Glasgow is 15-16C.

Image caption Bookmakers have halved their odds on UK record temperatures being broken this summer

But on Thursday thermometers reached 27C at Heathrow Airport and 27.1C just outside Glasgow.

Mr Silverstone said: "It's going to continue into next week. It will cool down a little but it will still be above average.

"But the record May temperature is 32.8C so we are more than five degrees below that.

"The record for Scotland in May is 29C so we are below that - but it has reached 27C two days running.

"Scotland broke their March record so they are having a pretty good streak overall but that doesn't mean it will stay that way."

Scandinavian high pressure

Mr Silverstone said there had been high temperatures in eastern Europe in recent weeks and the UK's warm weather had come from that direction.

"We have imported the very warm air from the continent. There has been a large area of high pressure over Europe and it has come westwards.

"The high pressure building from the north of us and over Scandinavia has given us high temperatures."

Image caption Some of the UK's hottest weather has been in Scotland but it has not broken records

The warm and sunny weather has provided a boost for tourism and has coincided with events including the Chelsea Flower Show and the start of the Olympic Torch Relay.

Keith Fearn of the Weston-super-Mare Hoteliers Association said: "At the moment it's absolutely fantastic.

"The weather makes the difference all the time and I think people will be coming down in their droves."

Bookmakers Coral have cut their odds on the UK temperature reaching an all time high this year from 16-1 to 8-1 but Mr Silverstone said it was too early to tell how hot it would be across the British summer.

"Every year is very different and there is no seasonal forecast yet," he said.

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