Heatwave London 2022: Met Office weather forecast as Level 3 heat alert issued - how long will it last?

All the latest on the heatwave coming to the capital

More hot weather is expected in the UK, with reports the temperatures could be just shy of 30C as soon as the upcoming weekend.

As usual, this has been an unpredictable year of weather, with us experiencing the worst storm in years with Storm Eunice, followed by temperatures that bettered the likes of Ibiza just a month on from the ferocious storm.

Temperatures are forecast to hit 30C on Monday, 11 July.

In London today, the weather today is set to exceed 30C, with the peak temperature being 31C, with the capital set to be warmer than Los Angeles today.

This means that Britain is likely to be hotter than popular tourist destinations such as Santorini and Marbella.

Will there be a heatwave in London?

The Met Office has issued A Level Three Heat Health Alert for next week, highlighting the potential health impacts of this type of weather.

The rumoured heatwave isn’t believed to arrive until mid-July, with temperatures reportedly set to hit 35C in Central and Southern England.

The weekly forecast for London looks positive, with more hot weather set to come, that will also be accompanied by some sun.

From Tuesday, 5 July the highest daily temperature up until Monday, 11 July is:

21C, 26C, 24C, 25C, 26C, 28C.

Sunday, 10 July is to be the best day weather-wise, with uninterrupted sun all day.

So in the next few days, whilst the weather isn’t edging past 30C, the temperature is to surpass the average temperature in London for July, which is usually around 23-24C.

Regarding upcoming weather, The Met Office says: “Temperatures are expected to be widely above average, especially across the south, with some areas seeing maxima in the high 20s, locally 30 Celsius by this weekend. Beyond that, the forecast becomes more uncertain and, while it may well continue warm, the extent, magnitude and duration of these above-average temperatures are not clear at this stage and won’t be known until closer to the time.”

What is a level three health alert?

A level three health alert is the second highest one you can get, a notch down from ‘national emergency’. An orange health alert is labelled ‘heatwave action’ and is described by the Met Office as ‘Triggered when the Met Office confirms threshold temperatures for one of more regions have been reached for one day and the following night, and the forecast for the next day has a greater than 90% confidence level that the day threshold temperature will be met. This stage requires social and healthcare services to target specific actions at high-risk groups.’

What is the criteria for a heatwave?

To be formally recognised as a heatwave by the Met Office, there is a certain threshold that must be met, and is explained by them here.

They say: “A UK heatwave threshold is met when a location records a period of at least three consecutive days with daily maximum temperatures meeting or exceeding the heatwave temperature threshold. The threshold varies by UK county.”

What has been the hottest day of the year so far?

You won’t have to go back far to find the hottest day of 2022 in the UK, as it happened just under a month ago on 16 June. The highest temperature of the year so far was  A high of 29.5C was recorded at Northolt in west London.

What is a heatwave?

Explained by the Met Office, “A heatwave is an extended period of hot weather relative to the expected conditions of the area at that time of year, which may be accompanied by high humidity”.

What is the weather usually like in July?

In the UK, July and August are usually seen as the two months where we endure the hottest weather. The average temperature in London in July is around 23-24C, and experts are predicting the weather will soon comfortably surpass that.

Are heat waves connected to climate change?

Climate change has been a hot topic for years now, with warnings that some of the damage being done to the earth, and the environmental challenges may soon become irreversible, and it would appear that this is having an impact in regards to heatwaves.

As per the Met Office, heat waves over the last few decades “can be attributed to human activity”.

They continue to say: ‘Climate change has already influenced the likelihood of temperature extremes in the UK.’

The United States Environmental Protection Agency says: “As the Earth’s climate warms, however, hotter-than-usual days and nights are becoming more common and heat waves are expected to become more frequent and intense.”