Belfast Telegraph

July weather blew hot and cold

This year's July began with record high temperatures, but by the end of the month the UK was shivering as the mercury plummeted to below freezing.

The first day of the month saw the highest July temperature ever recorded with 36.7C (98F) at Heathrow in west London, according to the Met Office.

Urgent health warnings were issued as paramedics dealt with a surge in calls amid fears the hot weather could result in deaths.

The previous record high of 36.5C (98F) was set in 2006 in Wisley, Surrey.

But although this year's July began with sweltering conditions, the last day of the month saw a number of weather stations across the UK register their lowest July temperatures.

Several days of a northerly airflow brought colder than average air over the UK, and this was combined with clear skies allowing overnight temperatures to plummet on July 31.

The places where localised July records were set this year include Exeter Airport - which has statistics going back half a century - with 2C (36F).

The mercury plummeted to as low as 5C (41F) in Keele, Staffordshire, which has 63 years of data, while Alice Holt Lodge in Surrey recorded 3.5C (38F) in July for the first time in its 64 years of records.

The coldest temperature recorded during the month was 0.6C (33F) at Katesbridge in Co Down, Northern Ireland, on July 15, although that was not a record for that station.

The all-time record for July of minus 2.5C (28F) was set at both St Harmon, Powys, in 1986 and Lagganlia, Inverness-shire, in 1977.

Daily temperature records exclude stations more than 500 metres above sea level.

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