Northern Ireland news

Heatwave will sweep across north from tomorrow

Boats large and small in Belfast harbour as the north braces itself for a heatwave. Picture by Hugh Russell
Claire Simpson

A SECOND summer heatwave is to hit Northern Ireland from tomorrow.

Temperatures are forecast to stay above 25C for up to five days, although highs of up to 30C could be seen in counties Tyrone, Fermanagh, and Armagh.

Coastal areas will see the lowest temperatures, although these will remain in the early twenties.

Strong sunshine and high UV levels are also forecast across the north.

Met Éireann has warned that overnight temperatures will reach "uncomfortably warm" levels from Thursday.

Temperatures will stay at around 14C overnight.

The forecaster has issued a weather advisory which will last until Monday.

Last month's heatwave saw temperatures reach 31.2C in Derrylin, Co Fermanagh.

July was also the driest in 22 years, with just over 50 per cent of the month's average rainfall.

The Met Office is forecasting another week of sweltering weather for parts of England - although the country is not expected to see the record-breaking temperatures of July's heatwave, where thermometers topped 40C for the first time.

Met Office spokesperson Grahame Madge said: "We're expecting the heat to build toward the end of the week, and expecting temperatures of 34C or 35C across parts of southern England.

"After that the heatwave will start to subside."

He said the heat was caused by an area of low pressure building from the west, but it would be slipping away eastwards by the end of this week, bringing fresher conditions.

In England, households are being urged not to light fires amid fears of further wildfires.

High temperatures and low rainfall have left the countryside, as well as urban parks and gardens, extremely dry, raising the risk of more devastating wildfires, with rivers, groundwater and reservoirs at low levels.

Two water companies have already announced hosepipe bans and others have warned they may need to follow suit - and there does not appear to be any immediate let-up in the dry, hot weather for southern parts of the country.

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service is urging people not to light barbecues or bonfires, or let off fireworks or sky lanterns, after a large fire which damaged gardens, sheds and trees was started by a chiminea.

Area manager Neil Fenwick said: "The ground across Essex is extremely dry allowing fires to spread easily and quickly. This is true for gardens as well as fields and heathland."

The Country Land and Business Association (CLA), which represents 28,000 farmers and landowners in England and Wales, has demanded retailers follow the lead of Marks and Spencer and ban the sale of disposable barbecues across the UK this summer.

The organisation's president, Mark Tufnell said: "The CLA is demanding that retailers immediately ban the sale of disposable barbecues across the UK this summer in a move to curb fires spreading in the countryside which cause great damage to rural communities and businesses and jeopardise the safety of all those in the surrounding areas."

Northern Ireland news