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UK basks in scorching temperatures

The UK basked in the hottest day of the year as temperatures reached almost 28C.

Southampton had the highest temperature as the mercury reached a scorching 27.8C (82F).

The warm weather reached most parts of the country, with Altnaharra in the Scottish Highlands recording a maximum of 27.3C, and Heathrow Airport in London recording 27.2C.

Average maximum temperatures for England in May are 14-17C, while Scotland would normally be 13-15C.

Thousands of people flocked to beaches and parks to bask in the sunshine, as conditions were hotter than many popular European destinations. Party island Ibiza was 25C (77F), Italian capital Rome 22C (71.6F), while Barcelona in Spain lagged behind at 21C (69.8F).

Gemma Plumb, a forecaster at MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said: "Most places were dry and very warm with sunshine. Temperatures are above the average."

She added that the warm weather will continue into the weekend.

"Tomorrow it's going to be a dry day for most places, with sunshine. Temperatures could reach 26-28C," she said.

"On Friday it's also looking very warm. It looks as though it's going to stay that way during Saturday and then into Sunday. There's a risk of a few showers across the south west of the UK, but most places should stay dry and sunny."

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