Britain grinds to halt as commuters told DON'T travel in heat tomorrow

Heatwave grinds Britain to a halt: Rail bosses tell commuters NOT to travel tomorrow as temperatures get set to hit 107F and AA warns roads will melt and tyres will burst – but deputy PM urges Brits to ‘be resilient and enjoy the sunshine’

  • Tomorrow Met Office predict mercury could climb to 107F (41C) making Britain hotter than the Sahara Desert
  • The Met Office has issued the UK’s first ever red weather warning for heat with records expected to be broken
  • Rail bosses and the AA have issued dire warnings to commuters and motorists about the impact of the heat 
  • Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab said people should be resilient enough to be able to ‘enjoy the sunshine’

Britain is set to grind to a halt tomorrow as rail bosses urge commuters not to travel with temperatures expected to hit 107F (41C) on what is likely to be the hottest ever day in the UK. 

Motorists are also being urged to be wary, with the AA warning that roads could melt and tyres may burst in the extreme heat over Monday and Tuesday. 

However, the ominous warnings have not stopped Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab from saying Britons should  be resilient enough to ‘enjoy the sunshine’ as MPs doubled down on advice warning schools not to close. 

The country is bracing for searing heat as an amber heat warning comes into effect today – before the first-ever red warning for extreme heat is implemented tomorrow.

Britain could be hotter than Delhi and the Sahara Desert on Monday with experts predicting the mercury could reach 41C – double the UK summer average. Peterborough is expected to hit 37C and Milton Keynes, Norwich and Lincoln set to hit 36C – while temperatures could hit 40C in London on Tuesday.

The extreme temperatures have led 21 rail operators – ranging from Transport for Wales and Gatwicj Express, to the Transpennine Express and Southern Rail –  to run slower than usual services on Monday and Tuesday. 

This is because National Rail has implemented speed restrictions across its network amid fears the rails could buckle in the soaring temperatures. 

People who have to travel are being urged to check their journeys before leaving home, with refunds offered to those who are not travelling because of the heat. 

Transport for London has also said it is running a reduced service on Monday and Tuesday, with commuters being urged to carry water with them if they have to travel.

Meanwhile, the AA has warned roads could melt and tyres burst due to the heat, with some councils sending out gritters to put sand on the road to stop the surface melting.

The AA and North West Ambulance Service said there is a greater chance of blowouts due to the heat, and are suggesting drivers check their tyre pressures before setting off and not to drive during the middle of the day to prevent vehicle engines overheating. 

On another scorching day in Britain today, it came as:

  • Deputy PM Dominic Raab said people should ‘try and enjoy the sunshine’ when mercury hits 40C;
  • A body of a teenager was pulled from the water at Salford Quays as a search was called off for a man who went missing while swimming in the Solent river;
  • TFL, Avanti West Coast and Southern Rail asked passengers to stay away from their services unless necessary;
  • Challock, Mollash and Broadstairs in Kent were left without water after usage spiked due to the heat;
  • Shadow Education Minister Bridget Phillipson said children should stay in school despite the red warning;
  • College of Paramedics chief Tracy Nicholls said ‘ferocious heat’ will be detrimental for Brits this week;
  • BBC meteorologist Simon King said the temperature record for the UK will be broken on Monday and Tuesday and this ‘just shouldn’t happen’.

Margate beach in Kent was packed today as thousands of people made their way to the coast to enjoy the glorious sunshine before temperatures skyrocket on Monday and Tuesday

People enjoy the hot weather at Hathersage open air swimming pool in Hope Valley, in the Peak District, Derbyshire as they try to stay cool today

People sunbathe at the West Reservoir in London today ahead of what are predicted to be two of the warmest days on record

Children play in the river in Bourton On The Water in the Costwolds today. Temperatures are expected to spike in England on Monday and Tuesday

The Met Office is warning temperatures could reach 40C in some parts of the UK, with large parts of England set to see their hottest ever day on Tuesday

Passengers travel on the London Underground on today during the sweltering heatwave that has gripped the country and will bring record temperatures

A woman holds a fan as she tries to stay cool while travelling on the London Underground today. Bosses at Transport for London are urging people not to travel if possible on Monday and Tuesday

People pack onto the beach at Southend-on-Sea today as they make the most of the fine weather on the weekend before it becomes too hot tomorrow

The beach at Margate in Kent today was also packed with daytrippers taking the opportunity to dip their toes while they can

A woman sunbathes as her dogs rest in the shade under a chair in the hot summer weather at Stone Bay in Broadstairs, Kent, today

A woman refills a water bottle in the Kings Cross area of London today as the capital saw temperatures soar past 30C during the heatwave

A group of people drink and dine on the street in Hackney today as they look to keep cool in the ongoing heatwave that has gripped the nation

A couple shelter underneath an umbrella on the beach at St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall today as they try to stay out of the sun

A woman sunbathes on a balcony in Hackney today as people in the capital tried their best to escape the sweltering temperatures

BBC meteorologist Simon King said parts of the East Midlands could see temperatures of up to 107.6F (42C) at the peak of the heatwave on Tuesday

People sunbathe in Joss Bay at Broadstairs in Kent today ahead of two days of unprecedented warm temperatures on Monday and Tuesday

The heat has caused vegetation to dry out, leading to tinderbox conditions in parts of the UK. This is the aftermath of a field fire which threatened the Lenham Cross war memorial near the village of Lenham in Kent today

Families take to the shallow river in Bourton On The Water in the Cotswolds today as they try to stay cool in the ongoing heatwave

Chief operating officer of Transport for London, Andy Lord, said London’s rail network would also be running a reduced service on Monday and Tuesday.

He told LBC: ‘We’re advising all our customers to only travel if their journey is essential, to make sure that they stay hydrated and carry water with them if they do have to travel.

‘Check before they travel because journey times will be extended.

‘We will have reduced services across the TFL network because of the safety restrictions we need to put in place due to the heat.’

Edmund King, AA president, said the extreme temperatures could be dangerous if motorists break down or get stuck in congestion.  

‘Ensure you have enough fuel or electric charge to keep your air-conditioning running,’ he said. 

‘The heatwave could cause considerable problems for many older vehicles without air-conditioning or recent servicing, with both the car and occupants over-heating. Driving outside the hottest part of the day is advisable.

‘Carry plenty of water – at least one litre per person travelling. Keeping yourself and other occupants hydrated can help lower body temperatures in hot weather. If the worst should happen, you can keep yourself and those with you topped up with cool water while waiting for help to arrive.’

Earlier today BBC weather presenter and meteorologist Simon King said it is possible the temperature could reach 107.6F (42C) in part of the East Midlands on Tuesday. 

On Twitter he said: ‘Still can’t fathom how the U.K. record will be exceeded on Monday and again on Tuesday by at least 2/3 degrees (38.7°C). Just shouldn’t happen.’

Some schools have announced they are closing on Monday and Tuesday due to the high temperatures, but Shadow Education Secretary Bridget Phillipson today said children should remain in school, telling Sophy Ridge On Sunday on Sky News: ‘I think children have missed out quite a lot already in terms of their education and it’s right for them to be there.’

With temperatures forecast to hit 40C on Monday and Tuesday, Mr Raab urged people to take ‘common sense’ precautions.

‘Obviously there is some common sense practical advice we are talking about – stay hydrated, stay out of the sun at the hottest times, wear sun cream – those sorts of things,’ he told Sky News’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday programme.

‘We ought to enjoy the sunshine and actually we ought to be resilient enough through some of the pressures it will place.’

Asked if people should consider working from home, Mr Raab said: ‘That is for employers to consider and people to decide.

‘I’m not going to start dictating things like that. But obviously we have got more flexible working. So that will also help with this kind of thing.’

MARGATE: A view of people on the beach in Margate, Kent. Temperatures are predicted to hit 31C across central England on Sunday

BRIGHTON: People jump into the sea after the Met Office on Friday issued its first ever ‘red’ warning for exceptional heat, forecasting record highs of 40 degrees Celsius next week

CAMBRIDGSHIRE: A warning to drivers on the M11 near Cambridge as temperatures start to rise with 40C forecast for Monday.

CAMBRIDGESHIRE: Grantchester Cricket playing on Sunday afternoon with a parched outfield due to the recent dry weather 

HEREFORDSHIRE: An amphibious car takes to the River Thames on a day hot during the Traditionally Boat Festival being held at Fawley Court

HAMPSHIRE: Swimmers cool off at Petersfield Open Air Pool in the days before record temperatures are expected

HUDDERSFIELD: An aerial view shows the cracked bed at Scammonden Reservoir, west of Huddersfield

BRIGHTON: The beach in Sussex was heaving this morning as a throng of sun-worshippers came to enjoy the weather

BRIGHTON: Abi Stanley 24 and Esme Magee-Wood, 24, enjoy the hot weather on the beach with a pose in the water

LONDON: Children cool off in the Southbank Centre fountain during a heatwave

BRIGHTON: Crowds fill the beach either side of the pier in East Sussex after an amber level weather alert was put in place today and record temperatures in the high 30Cs are expected in the next few days

HUDDERSFIELD: An aerial view shows the low water level at Scammonden Reservoir, west of Huddersfield

SOUTHEND-ON-SEA: People were pictured relaxing on the beach in the Thames Estuary in Essex earlier today

SOUTHEND-ON-SEA: People were pictured relaxing on the beach in the Thames Estuary in Essex earlier today 

BROADSTAIRS: Beach-goers cool off in water to escape the heat on a hot summer day on the Kent coast

BROADSTAIRS: The town in Kent is a popular seaside town which attracted scores of families enjoying today’s sunshine

Pictured: Madeleine Wells, 20, and Luca Reggio, 20, cool off this weekend by making a splash at the Lymington Sea Water Swimming Baths, Hampshire

LYMINGTON: Mabel, a 5-month-old Labrador cools off this weekend by making a splash at the sea in Lymington, Hants. Dogs played in the sea, leaping in to keep cool

LYMINGTON: A young man enjoys a splash this morning in Lymington, Hampshire, while the country prepares for tomorrow’s heat plume

LONDON: People taking pictures in Hyde Park during a heatwave which could top 40C in the coming days

HENLEY: A Union Jack amphibious car with the number plate get Wet drives along the river in Oxfordshire

BOURNEMOUTH: Suely Silva pours a bottle of water over Stuart Henderson to cool down outside their beach hut

BOURNEMOUTH: Stuart Henderson and Suely Silva, with her two sons Yaden (first from left), 12, and Leo, 9, enjoy some watermelon outside their beach hut

Met Office Chief Executive Penny Endersby said: ‘Here in the UK we’re used to treating a hot spell as a chance to go and play in the sun. This is not that sort of weather.’

This week will see the UK’s first red extreme heat warning as temperatures soar towards 40C for the first time on record. Meteorologists have given an 80 per cent chance of the mercury topping the UK’s record of 38.7C, set in Cambridge in 2019.

Meteorologists are giving a 50-50 chance of the 40C barrier being passed in Britain on Monday or Tuesday.

College of Paramedics chief executive Tracy Nicholls said the ‘ferocious heat’ could have a detrimental effect on Britons while the chairman of the NHS Confederation added hospitals are going to be ‘really, really pushed’ over the next few days.

The heat has also left thousands without water after a series of burst water mains across the south-east of England.

Challock, Mollash and Broadstairs in Kent are experiencing disruptions to their service which started on Saturday night. Severe water mains have burst across the region – including in Paddock Wood – which have also affected water supplies ahead of the record temperatures expected at the start of next week. 

Yesterday, Ministers held a Cobra meeting to discuss the health effects of the heatwave after a national emergency was declared. 

Pictured: Fans enjoy the hot weather as the riders race in the Super Pole during day three of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship 2022 at Donington Park, Leicestershire

Pictured: Fans enjoy the hot weather during day three of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship 2022 at Donington Park, Leicestershire

Swimmer Flora Rizzi, 26, from London, cools off this morning in Brighton, Sussex before the heat plume from Europe hits England tomorrow with temperatures expected above 40c

A packed Brighton beach in Sussex pictured at 10.55am as swimmers and sunbathers enjoy a slightly cooler day before tomorrow and Tuesday’s heat plume

Sunbathers in Brighton enjoy themselves before tomorrow’s heat plume, when extreme temperatures could surpass 40C

Pictured: Sunworshippers flock to West Wittering Beach in West Sussex as the heatwave takes hold across the UK today

Pictured: People out early in Hyde Park, London as the capital prepares for another hot day ahead of dangerously high temperatures tomorrow

Asked if she would support parents who decide to keep their children off school on those days, Bridget Phillipson told Sophy Ridge On Sunday on Sky News: ‘I am sure that headteachers will be doing everything they possibly can to make sure their schools are kept as cool as possible, that children are kept out of the hot sun and are kept indoors as much as possible.

‘I think children have missed out quite a lot already in terms of their education and it’s right for them to be there.’

On headteachers, she added: ‘They will always act in the best interests of the children in school.’

Health Secretary Steve Barclay urged the public to look out for vulnerable relatives and neighbours and urged people to take ‘sensible steps in terms of water, shade and cover’.

After chairing the Cobra meeting, Cabinet Office Minister Kit Malthouse warned there would be significant disruption to transport at the start of the week and urged people not to travel unnecessarily.

He said: ‘The heat will affect rails, for example, so the trains have to run slower. There may be fewer services. People need to be on their guard for disruption.

‘If they don’t have to travel, this may be a moment to work from home.’

Pictured: People out early in Hyde Park, London as the capital prepares for another hot day ahead of dangerously high temperatures tomorrow

Pictured: A view of the aftermath of a field fire which threatened the Lenham Cross war memorial near the village of Lenham in Kent

Pictured: A morning sunbathe for a man in Greenwich Park, London as heatwave weather continues

People are being advised to take precautions as a three-day heat warning has come into effect in Ireland.

The Status Yellow alert began at 6am on Sunday and will last until 9pm on Tuesday, with temperatures of up to 32C possible in places on Monday.

The Met Eireann weather warning stated: ‘On Sunday and Monday exceptionally warm weather will occur over Ireland with daytime temperatures of 25 to 30 degrees and possibly up to 32 degrees in places on Monday.

‘Night time temperatures will range from 15 to 20 degrees.’

Met Eireann said there was an increased risk of heat stress, high solar UV index and water-related incidents.

It came as a man in his 60s died after getting into difficulty while swimming in Portarlington, Co Laois, on Saturday.

The incident happened at around 3.30pm at Derryounce Lake.

The man was taken from the water and brought by ambulance to Midland Regional Hospital Portlaoise, but was pronounced dead a short time later.

It is the third swimming-related death to have occurred in the past week.

As the heatwave arrived in Ireland, Dublin City Council put contingency plans in place to protect the homeless from extreme temperatures and Irish Water reminded people to be mindful of their water usage.

NHS Confederation chairman Lord Victor Adebowale said the NHS ‘will cope’ over the next few days, but added that ‘coping isn’t good enough’.

He told Times Radio: ‘My members are pretty stretched at the moment.

‘Ambulances are operating at their peak, the waiting times for ambulances are now getting longer.

‘We are going to be really, really pushed and it’s not just the red warning, the heatwave.

‘We are dealing with Covid, which is causing sickness in our ambulance crews, which is one of the reasons we’ve got vacancies.

‘And we’ve also got a social care challenge, which is we can’t get people out of hospital because social care is on its knees.’

Lord Adebowale added: ‘The NHS will cope but coping isn’t good enough. We need to be actually operating in a way that allows people to get the treatment they need wherever needed, in good time. And that’s a struggle.’

Police have repeated warnings about cooling off in open water after a teenage boy died while swimming with friends in a canal.

The 16-year-old got into difficulties and was last seen struggling in the water at Salford Quays in Greater Manchester at around 6.15pm on Saturday.

Police, fire and ambulance services were called and a search was mounted.

A boy’s body was later located and recovered by specialist divers overnight.

Police said that, although formal identification has not yet taken place, the body is believed to be that of the missing 16-year-old.

His family is being kept updated, and supported by specially-trained officers.

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said inquiries are continuing but detectives from Swinton CID are at this stage confident that there are no suspicious circumstances, and a file is being prepared for the coroner.

A helicopter and coastguard search for a swimmer missing in the Solent was called off today/yesterday after no sign could be found of the man.

It was understood that he entered the water on Saturday afternoon near the Royal Yacht Squadron HQ in Cowes on the Isle of Wight but got into difficulties as a result of the currents soon after.

The alarm was raised and the coastguard rescue helicopter from Lee on Solent was scrambled to make searching swoops across the Solent between the Isle of Wight and Southampton.

Lifeboat crews from Cowes, Yarmouth, Calshot and Gosport joined the search at 3.39pm. Three Isle of Wight coastguard teams also attended, assembling on Cowes seafront.

A spokesman for the coastguard said that the teams carried out an extensive search but were stood down when darkness fell. After finding no trace of the man, the search was called off at 10.30pm.

The police were informed and officers from Hampshire Constabulary were understood to be contacting relatives of the missing man.

Currents in the Solent are incredibly fast-running, particularly around the island and The Needles.

No details have yet been given of the missing swimmer.

Detective Inspector Joanne Johnston, of GMP, said: ‘Yesterday evening’s events are nothing short of devastating and my thoughts are with the friends and family of the young boy who lost his life in such awful circumstances.

‘We are doing all we can to support the boy’s family at this incredibly difficult time, and we are focused on ensuring they get the answers they deserve as to how this tragedy occurred.

‘From our inquiries so far, we are confident that there are no suspicious circumstances and that this is such a sad reminder of the dangers of entering open water, whatever the weather.’

As the record-breaking heatwave begins, GMP said people need to avoid being tempted to cool off in reservoirs, rivers, canals or ponds.

Research last week showed that people were attempting to make the most of the air-conditioning at work with offices running at 42 per cent capacity, the highest level since March 2020.

Some schools have started the summer holidays early as a result of the heat but contrary to the suggestion by teaching unions that some schools will need to shut, Government sources told The Mail on Sunday that the ‘consensus’ at yesterday’s Cobra meeting was that youngsters would be at risk if left unsupervised at home.

Meteorologists have warned there is a 50 per cent chance of temperatures reaching 40C or above on Tuesday, most likely along the A1 corridor, which runs from London to Scotland through counties including Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire.

That would make the UK hotter than the 35C expected in Tamanrasset in the Sahara, and 37C in New Delhi, India.

A steamy 30C – 15C above average – is due at 1am tomorrow night in London.

The current record night-time temperature was 23.9C, set in August 1990 in Brighton.

People relax on the beach at Southend-on-Sea on the Thames Estuary in Essex

A body has been found in Salford Quays after a major search operation ended in tragedy. Police confirmed search teams had located the body of a 16-year-old boy after reports that a person had got into difficulty in the water earlier this evening

Rail passengers look at departures boards as they wait to board trains at Euston station in London today

The emergency services were called at about 6.15pm, with specialist search teams being deployed. The search effort has now been stood down, but a cordon remains in place.

Pictured: A fire brigade were onsite in Sheerness, Kent, this morning trying to dampen down dry grass that caught alight at Barton’s Point Coastal Park last night during a model plane flying spectacular show

Pictured: People out early in Hyde Park, London as the capital prepares for another hot day ahead of dangerously high temperatures tomorrow

Pictured: People out early in Hyde Park, London as the capital prepares for another hot day ahead of dangerously high temperatures tomorrow

Pictured: People out early in Hyde Park, London as the capital prepares for another hot day ahead of dangerously high temperatures tomorrow

Pictured: People out early in Hyde Park, London as the capital prepares for another hot day ahead of dangerously high temperatures tomorrow

Pictured: People out early in Hyde Park, London as the capital prepares for another hot day ahead of dangerously high temperatures tomorrow

Fire brigades have warned the public to be careful when throwing away disposable BBQs or charcoal and cigarettes, and not to burn garden waste.

Western Europe continues to see record temperatures with wildfires in western France and Spain.

France’s heatwave is expected to peak on Monday, with temperatures climbing above 40C (104F).

In Spain, health ministers say unusually high temperatures of 45C have resulted in 360 heat-related deaths.

The chief executive of the College of Paramedics has warned that the ‘ferocious heat’ the UK is predicted to experience over the next few days could result in people dying.

Tracy Nicholls told Sky News’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday programme: ‘This isn’t like a lovely hot day where we can put a bit of sunscreen on, go out and enjoy a swim and a meal outside.

‘This is serious heat that could actually, ultimately, end in people’s deaths because it is so ferocious. We’re just not set up for that sort of heat in this country.’

What are the potential impacts of extreme heat?


The Met Office says that delays and cancellations to rail travel are possible with ‘potential for significant welfare issues for those who experience even moderate delays’. 

And Network Rail has warned people to travel only if absolutely necessary amid the high temperatures, with speed restrictions and disruption likely.

Jake Kelly, Network Rail’s System Operator group director, said: ‘Rail passengers in England and Wales should only travel if necessary on Monday and Tuesday as there will be delays and cancellations to train services due to the unprecedented heat we’re expecting.

‘The wellbeing of our passengers is our first priority so we’re asking all passengers who decide to travel to take time to prepare before leaving the house.’

Network Rail has warned that services across the UK may be subject to the speed restrictions to avoid tracks buckling, with Avanti West Coast, South Western Railway and Heathrow Express among the operators warning of potential disruption. West Midlands Trains and London Northwestern Railway have already imposed limits on sections of their network this week.


The Met Office says that delays on roads and road closures are possible during the heat alert period. 

The RAC has urged motorists to ‘think carefully before they drive, and do everything they can to avoid a breakdown’. It says motorists should check the coolant and oil levels under the bonnet when the engine is cold. 

It added: ‘If temperatures were to go as high as around 40C as some are predicting, then people should question their decision to drive in the first place.’

Hampshire County Council is preparing to deploy gritters in response to melting roads, saying that the machines will be spreading light dustings of sand which ‘acts like a sponge to soak up excess bitumen’.

Motorists who find tar stuck to their tyres are advised to wash it off with warm soapy water.


The Met Office has warned that air travel could also be disruption during the heat. This is because planes can become too heavy to take off in very hot weather due to reduced air density resulting in a lack of lift.

This happened during a heatwave in summer 2018 at London City Airport when some passengers had to be removed so the services become light enough to take off on the relatively short runway.


The Met Office has warned that a failure of ‘heat-sensitive systems and equipment’ is possible. This could result in a loss of power and other essential services, such as water, electricity and gas. 

Hot weather can lead to high demand on the power network because people are turning on fans and air conditioning – and the heat can also lead to a drop in the efficiency of overhead power cables and transformers.


The Met Office says that ‘changes in working practices and daily routines will be required’ in the extreme heat. 

There is no specific law for a maximum working temperature, or when it is too hot to work.

But employers are expected to ensure that in offices or similar environments, the temperature in workplaces must be ‘reasonable’. Companies must follow follow health and safety laws which include keeping the temperature at a comfortable level, known as ‘thermal comfort’; and providing clean and fresh air.

The Trades Union Congress says that during heatwaves staff should be allowed to start work earlier, or stay later, leave jackets and ties in the wardrobe and have regular breaks. It is also calling for an absolute maximum indoor temperature of 30C (86F) – or 27C (81F) for strenuous jobs – to legally indicate when work should stop.


The Met Office has said that adverse health effects could be ‘experienced by all, not just limited to those most vulnerable to extreme heat, leading to serious illness or danger to life’ during the warning period. 

In addition, charity Asthma and Lung UK has warned up to three million asthma sufferers could be affected by high pollen levels, so should use their inhalers. 


Plans to cope with the heat, created by the NHS and UKHSA, say children should not do ‘vigorous physical activity’ when temperatures rise above 30C (86F).

Some sports days have been cancelled this week, while official advice suggests moving school start, end and break times to avoid the hottest points in the day.

Put ice under your desk fan, turn off the oven… and keep your pillow cases cool in the freezer! Just three of our budget-boosting tips to breeze through the heatwave

By Sarah Davidson for the Mail on Sunday

The temperature is rising, but that doesn’t mean your bills have to. You don’t need expensive gadgets and energy-guzzling air-conditioning units to get through the heatwave. Here are our nine ways to stay cool – and save money.

1: Turn your desk fan into an air-con unit

Air-conditioning may be the best way to cool a room, but units are expensive to buy and run. You can pick up a decent desk fan for under £20 but the cheapest air-conditioners start at about £250. And a desk fan uses roughly one per cent of the electricity air-conditioning uses. However, there are things you can do to make your fan work a little more like an air-conditioner.

As the temperature drops towards the end of the day and the air becomes cooler outside than in, point your fan towards an open window. That’s a more efficient way of cooling your room.

Download the Refill app on your mobile phone before you head out. It will show you the nearest public water fountains and places you can refill your water bottle for free across the UK

You could also try putting a bowl of ice in front of your fan. Julian House, at the discount website myvouchercodes, explains: ‘The air passes over the bowl, circulating cooler air.’ He adds that using a metal bowl could help keep the ice frozen for longer.

2: Hang towels outside your window

Keeping curtains closed during the day blocks out some of the heat from entering your home. But even with the windows covered this way, roughly 90 per cent of the heat still gets through.

It can be even more effective to block the sun from the outside, which keeps it off your windows altogether.

Shutters are most effective, but for a cheap and easy makeshift alternative, you could hang light-coloured towels or sheets outside your south-facing windows.

3: Put your pillow cases in the freezer

Try putting pillow cases, pyjamas and even bed sheets into freezer bags and keeping them in the freezer to help cool you down right before bed. You could even fill a hot-water bottle and freeze it.

Keep your daily moisturisers and sunscreen in the fridge to cool you down when you apply them.

‘Why not put some aloe vera in the fridge as well and get double the cooling? It’s also great for dealing with sunburn,’ adds House.

Ankles, feet and wrists have pulse points, so keeping them cool is an effective way of keeping your body temperature down

Ankles, feet and wrists have pulse points, so keeping them cool is an effective way of keeping your body temperature down.

If you are tempted to stand under a cold shower, you may find that putting your feet in a bowl of cold water is sufficient to cool off – and helps to keep your water bills down if you have a meter.

5: Turn appliances off standby

A surprising amount of heat is generated from appliances on standby, such as televisions and PC monitors. Switching them off can help avoid adding heat to already sweltering rooms – and cut your energy bills.

Conventional incandescent light bulbs lose up to 90 per cent of their energy as waste heat. Switch to efficient LED models to cut bills and heat.

Keep the back of your fridge clean and at least 10cm from the wall. Fridges work less efficiently when their coils are covered in dirt and dust. They also have to work harder when they are wedged against a wall – give them space for air to circulate.

A surprising amount of heat is generated from appliances on standby, such as televisions and PC monitors. Switching them off can help avoid adding heat to already sweltering rooms – and cut your energy bills

6: Only use the car A/C on faster roads

The inside temperature of your car could reach an oven-like 60C in the next few days, according to the AA. So keeping cool on the go is essential. Using your car’s air-conditioning increases its fuel consumption by about ten per cent, says the AA. However, opening the windows is not necessarily a cost-free alternative. Open windows can create drag, which also increases fuel consumption. Deciding which option to go for is a fine balance.

As a rule of thumb, if you are driving slowly – less than about 45mph – open windows is cheaper. But, if you’re driving on the motorway, air-conditioning is more effective. Using air-conditioning is less efficient on short journeys than long as it has to work harder to cool the car in the first place, rather than just keep the car cool.

A spokesman for the AA adds: ‘If you return to a hot car, it’s best to open all the windows when you first drive off to clear the hot air before closing them and turning the air-con on. That way, the air-con won’t have to work so hard and you’ll cool the interior more quickly.’

7: Refill your water bottle for free

Download the Refill app on your mobile phone before you head out. It will show you the nearest public water fountains and places you can refill your water bottle for free across the UK.

Major high atreet brands such as Costa Coffee, Greggs and Morrisons have all signed up to offer free drinking water along with hundreds of National Trust and English Heritage properties. Go to

8: Fill up your fridge with water bottles

Fridges work most efficiently when they are reasonably full because refrigerated food helps to maintain the cool temperature.

You don’t need to buy extra groceries – just fill up spaces with bottles of water. That way you’re also stocked up with cold drinks to cool down throughout the day.

However, don’t fill your fridge so much that you can’t easily see what is in it. Otherwise you’ll lose cool air while you’re rooting through to find things. About 75 per cent full is ideal. Make sure the seals around your fridge and freezer doors are intact, too. In this heat, hot air will get in quickly and make the fridge work harder to stay cool.

The inside temperature of your car could reach an oven-like 60C in the next few days, according to the AA. So keeping cool on the go is essential

9: Ditch the oven

It sounds obvious, but do keep your oven off in this weather and use the microwave, barbecue or eat cold meals such as salads instead. Opting for a microwave or BBQ has the advantage of not heating up your home when you cook. And microwaves use far less energy to heat food than ovens, so you will be saving on household bills.

Salads have a high water content, which helps to keep you hydrated. Nutrition expert Penny Weston, who runs the Made Wellness Centre in Staffordshire, says: ‘As well as drinking plenty of water, make sure you eat foods such as cucumbers, which are 95 per cent water, tomatoes, watercress – where the clue is in the name – and apples, which are 85 per cent water.’

Dr Ross Perry, medical director of Cosmedics, adds: ‘Keep meals light as heavy meals will only keep you awake and stop you from getting a good night’s sleep when it’s hot.’

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