Beaches in Burnham-On-Sea, Brean and Berrow have seen an influx of visitors amid a summer heatwave.
A ‘Level 3 heat-health alert’ has been issued for the South West as temperatures rise across the region by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) and the Met Office from 9am today (Monday July 11th) until 9am on Friday July 15th.
The Burnham-On-Sea area saw temperatures reach 27°C (80.6°F) over the weekend with higher temperatures expected today. After slightly cooler conditions in the middle of this week, the heat is forecast to return by Friday.
As pictured here, beaches in Burnham-On-Sea, Brean and Berrow were extra busy over the weekend as people enjoyed the sunshine and cooled off with paddling and sea swims.
Dr Agostinho Sousa, head of extreme events and health protection at the UKHSA, says: “Heat-health alerts have now been issued to the majority of the country, with temperatures set to remain consistently high throughout the duration of next week.”
“Most of us can enjoy the hot weather when it arrives, but it is important to keep yourself hydrated and to find shade where possible when UV rays are strongest, between 11am and 3pm.”
“If you have vulnerable family, friends and neighbours, make sure they are aware of how they can keep themselves protected from the warm weather.”
The Met Office’s definition of a heatwave is when a location records a period of at least three consecutive days with daily maximum temperatures reaching or exceeding the heatwave temperature threshold, which varies by county.
In such conditions, the Met Office issues a heat-health warning which gets sent on to health and social care professionals, so they can work to minimise the impact of the high temperatures on people’s health.
Meteorologist Annie Shuttleworth said: “We’re at the start of a potentially relatively long spell of warm weather for much of the UK away from the far North West where it’s likely to be a bit cooler and cloudier.”
She added: “For some areas, namely parts of the South West, this is probably the start of their heatwave, but for the more widespread heatwave threshold temperatures to be met it’s likely to be from Sunday, so Sunday, Monday, Tuesday.”
The hot summer days are also ushering in hot and humid nights, and Ms Shuttleworth urged Britons to “keep the curtains closed during the day, especially if you’ve got a south-facing bedroom” and “keep ventilation going around your house through the day”.
The warm weather looks to be settling in for some time to come, according to Met Office forecasting, with a chance that the UK could see one of the longest heatwaves ever.
Ms Shuttleworth said: “If we see over nine days of temperatures staying above 28 degrees then it would be the longest since 2018.”
She warned there was a lot of uncertainty around what temperatures will be seen after Thursday, but it is nonetheless likely that it will remain warmer than average for the month. The average temperature for July is around 20C.