The hottest day of the year so far has brought smiles to thousands of beachgoers who defied an official warning to stay inside – but commuters across the country are getting enduring sweaty journeys home on packed-out public transport.
On Monday, millions of Brits ignored an amber warning from the Met Office to stay out of the sun as they hit the nation’s beaches and parks to enjoy the soaring temperatures on the hottest day of 2018.
Temperatures hit 91F (33.3C) in Santon Downham, Suffolk, giving Monday the record high for 2018, but temperatures could still rocket to 101F (38C).
Commuters melted on a packed, sweaty Central Line tube train in London this evening on the hottest day of the year
Many of them were seen fanning themselves on the crammed carriages as they made their way home from work in 91F heat
Unpleasant: A young girl tries to cool herself down with an electric fan as her family squeeze into the boiling Central Line train
A woman clutches a bottle of water in an attempt to keep hydrated while using sweltering public transport this evening
Health DC escort services are expecting a surge in sun stroke patients as advice to draw curtains and close windows is hurriedly issued to the public, alongside an official amber weather warning.
Man in his 20s drowns on hottest day of year
The first casualty of the heatwave has come today after a man’s body was pulled from a river.
The man, believed to be in his 20s, was spotted floating in the River Foss in York and was later confirmed dead after being taken to hospital.
North Yorkshire Police said it received a report that a man had entered the river near the Q-Park car park in the city centre at about 4pm on Saturday.
A North Yorkshire spokesman said: ‘He was pulled from the river by a member of the public and taken to York Hospital for treatment.
‘Sadly, the man, who was in his 20s and from York, died in hospital the following day.’
The force said it was not yet in a position to identify the man and enquiries were continuing into how he came to be in the river.
The amber, or level three, warning is issued when temperatures are predicted to hit 86F (30C) degrees during the day, and 59F (15C) degrees at night, for at least two consecutive days.
The nation is one step away from level four – which would result in the declaration of a national emergency.
Britain is now bracing for the highest temperatures for more than a decade to come this week, as well as the driest summer for 225 years, but many homes and offices – as well as Tube lines – are unprepared for the heat spike.
Official Met Office advice is to stay indoors with closed and covered windows – avoiding the stunning sunshine which can be so rare in Britain.
The sunshine avoidance advice is now being debated in many homes across the country as sun lovers fling open the windows to enjoy the light – and cool down their home.
A man named Adrian said on Twitter: ‘Met Office advice to stay out of the sun? But we spend fortunes flying to places to get this weather every year.’
Despite the advice, thousands have flocked to beaches or set themselves up on scorched grass to top up their tan today, not missing the chance to catch some rays on home soil.
But those of us who went to work are set for a sweaty rush hour crush or a sweltering car journey to get home, this evening.
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Stay out of the sun? No chance. Britons flock to the nation’s beaches today to soak up the sun. Pictured: Chichester, England
Esther and Daisy the dog enjoy paddle boarding across calm seas at Lyme Regis in Dorset while the sun bakes Britain
Meanwhile in London: Green spaces were packed at lunch time as people working and living in the city attempted to make the most of the sunshine. Pictured: London’s Regent’s Park
Amber warning: Britons are being advised to stay out of the sunshine washing over from Spain which has been dubbed the ‘Mediterranean melt’
It’s officially the hottest day of 2018: The Met Office has confirmed the year’s hottest temperature was recorded in Suffolk
School’s out for summer: Glorious weather came in the first week of the school holidays for children in England
The heatwave continues as temperatures rise on a scorching hot and sunny day at Bournemouth beaches with blue skies and unbroken sunshine
A couple shelter in the shade of a beach hut on West Wittering Beach during hot weather on the first day of the Summer school holidays
Hundreds of sunseekers flock to the beach at Lyme Regis in Dorset as the heatwave continues into Monday. All week long temperatures will rise, forecasters say
West Wittering Beach was packed with families celebrating the sunshine in the school summer holidays as Britain baked. This year is around 10C hotter than average
Holidaymaker Katie House lifts son Edward into the air on the beach at Lyme Regis in Dorset as they take advantage of the sunshine
Commuters in London were baking in the sunshine before they reached the office on Monday morning as the sunshine rose in a cloudless sky
Sunseekers head to the seaside to soak up the sun at Bournemouth beaches early on Monday. But anyone heading into the office is also being told to slap on the sun screen
How will that work? Social media users asked how it was possible they will be able to stay out of the sun during the hottest hours of the day. Others said they plan to ignore the advice
Commuters attempted to keep cool on the Tube this morning as temperatures soared to around 33C at 9am on Monday
Early on Monday Londoners were already shedding clothes on Primrose Hill as the day started off extremely hot
Beachgoers lie in the sun on West Wittering Beach during hot weather on the first day of the Summer school holidays
Dumped Love Island contestants Rosie Williams and Ellie Brown took advantage of the hot weather to enjoy rollercoasters and ice cream on the beach at Thorpe Park Resort
Commuters took to Twitter to express their anxiety about the trip home from the city.
One woman said: ‘I don’t think I’ve ever been this hot before in my life and I still have to contend with bank station and the northern line during rush hour. I fully want to off myself at this point.’
Rachel Kennedy said: ‘Praying no one will touch me on this bus #heatwave.’
Adults are also being urged to check on elderly relatives and neighbours, while remaining hydrated themselves as the nation swelters.
Meanwhile, grass fires have continued to break out as the sun beats down on dried out areas of Britain.
A huge fire broke out at a farm in Martinstown, Dorset on Saturday morning, sending plumes of smoke into the air, just weeks after fires raged on Saddleworth Moor and in Wanstead.
Many parts of South and Midlands have had virtually no rainfall for almost two months – far exceeding the definition of ‘absolute drought,’ which is no measurable rainfall for 15 days.
This could make 2018 the driest summer since 1766.
United Utilities has introduce a hosepipe ban across most of the North West from August 5 to combat the issues caused by break in rainfall.
Just 23mm of rain has fallen across England and Wales on average since June 1, Met Office figures show.
Only 0.6mm of rain has fallen since June 1 in Shoreham, West Sussex, with 0.8mm at St Catherine’s Point, Isle of Wight, and 1.6mm at High Wycombe, Bucks, Met Office data passed to Reading University meteorology expert Dr Roger Brugge showed.
As a result of the dry spell the longest and most famous canal in Britain is closing.
A 55-mile section of the historic Leeds & Liverpool canal will close for at least a month from July 30th unless there is a significant downpour.
The Canal and River Trust made the reluctant decision to close all locks along the route amid critical water supply concerns.
It means boats can no longer travel from Wigan, in Greater Manchester, through Lancashire and then up to Gargrave, near Skipton, in West Yorkshire.
The Met Office forecasts ‘more of the same’ for the next month, with mainly dry conditions. Any thunderstorms will have only a small impact on countrywide rainfall totals, as storms affect small areas.
Hyde Park sunbathers also enjoyed a drink in London, as the hot weather continues across the country on Monday
Wine in the sunshine! Women took to the water in Christchurch Meadows, Oxford, to enjoy the scorching summer weather
These are the dramatic pictures that show a huge plume of thick black smoke that was visible for miles after a fire broke out at a farm
Mike Hawkins and his wife Marleen de Cleen captured the blaze at Pen Barn Farm at Martinstown, Dorset, from the air when they were flying in their microlight plane
The battle to control a 1000ft-high spring in Cheltenham
Engineers have been battling a 100FT spring caused by a burst water pipe, has been gushing since 2pm yesterday (Sun).
Huge quantities of water have been surging into the air for two days – amid threats of a hosepipe ban.
Engineers are at the scene of the geyser in a field near the Gloucester Old Spot pub on the A4019 Tewkesbury Road in Cheltenham.
Water firm Severn Trent has said it can’t rule out people losing their water supply as a result of the huge leak.
Temperatures are now approximately 10C higher than average for this time of year, meaning a heatwave has officially been reached.
Now, experts say it is set to get even hotter.
Bookmakers Coral cut odds to 2/1 on temperatures beating Britain’s hottest temperature ever recorded, the 101.3F (38.5C) on August 10, 2003, at at Brogdale, near Faversham, Kent.
A pulse of scorching air from south of Spain and Africa was shown covering Britain by Friday on a dramatic weather map.
But, while the sun is at its hottest, the public should avoid it altogether, the Met Office warned.
‘We advise the public to take care in the sun, especially when temperatures are potentially reaching 30 degrees or more throughout this week – either stay out of the sun or be sensible and don’t go out in the strongest sunshine hours (11am to 3pm)’, a spokeswoman said.
This week, the ‘Mediterranean melt’ – a blast of hot air from Spain – will keep temperatures above 80F all the way up until Friday, with temperatures set to peak on Thursday, making the UK hotter than Jamaica.
Met Office forecasters are confident that Brits will be treated to 95F (35C) heat, with bookmakers cutting the odds to 2/1 that the country will experience the hottest day ever, beating the 101F (38.5C) record from 2003.
Keeping cool: The Ostriches enjoy the cooling effect of a sprinkler put in their enclosure as the temperatures soared once again as the heatwave got underway at the West Midlands Safari Park near Bewdley in Worcestershire
Chichester: Boys run into the water as they celebrate being off school for six weeks while the sun is set to shine
A dredger is used to remove green algae from the the Grand Union canal at Little Venice in central London since it has been flourishing in the warm weather
A green mile: Green algae covers the Grand Union canal at Little Venice in central London as the sun beats down on the water
Forecasters are predicting record temperatures this week. Ducks are swimming through thick algae in London. Pictured: Algae forming on the lake in Green Park at the front of Buckingham Palace
Britain is now on a Level Three warning from the Met Office – one step below Level Four – at which point is is expected fit and healthy people will begin to experience health issues.
Instead of 75F which could usually be expected in London in July, temperatures have been hitting up to 93F.
Scotland, which averages 62.6F (17C), could enjoy highs of up to 77F or 25C, while Wales could jump to 78.8F.
The 1000ft spring spraying into the air in Cheltenham which can be spotted along the A4019 Tewkesbury Road
The nation is one step away from a national emergency. Early on Monday morning people were enjoying the warm weather (right) in Queen’s Park, London. Temperatures could hit 101F this week – that’s 36C
This week Britain is being warned to stay out of the sun as the temperatures verge on creating a ‘national emergency’
Monday morning was already hot as people made their way to work – many of whom struggled to sleep the previous evening. The weather on Primrose Hill, London, was being enjoyed early on
London and the south east could sizzle on the hottest day in three years as the mercury looks set to soar as high as 35C. Commuters were fanning themselves and guzzling water this morning
A group of young women walk past deck chairs in St James’s Park central London, as the hot weather continues in the capital
Hot commuters on London’s Central line, try to cool down on Monday morning while reporting baking temperatures under ground
One woman used a fan connected to her mobile phone to try and keep cool on the underground this morning amid soaring temperatures
Joggers brave the heat for a morning run near the sea at Southsea, Portsmouth, this morning. Adults and children are being urged to stay out of the sun
Sister and brother Olivia, 4, and Santiago, 2, from Portsmouth splash around and cool off in the water this morning near Southsea Pier
Forecasters said there was a chance of hitting 101F, which could put Britons in line for the hottest day since the mercury hit 94.1F at Heathrow on June 21 last year.
The hottest July day on record is 98F – 36.7C – which was reached at Heathrow on July 1 2015.
Porthmadog in North Wales holds the record for the hottest day of the year so far, with temperatures reaching 91.4F (33C) on June 28.
The heatwave will bring the hottest weather to the east or south east while there will be outbreaks of rain in the north and west.
The Met Office said: ‘On Monday, hot and humid air will lie over the east and south east of England, with cloud and outbreaks of rain across northern England.
‘The cloud and rain will gradually break up and turn showery in the north, with some of these heavy and thundery.
‘South of the rain, long spells of sunshine, will develop with temperatures generally ranging from very warm in West and East Midlands, to hot and humid, locally very hot in east and southeastern areas.’
A member of The Queen’s Guard looks sweltering as he takes part in the Changing the Guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace in London
Lauren Smith (19) from Dublin, enjoying the warm weather in Hyde Park, London, on Monday as the week looks set to be the hottest for a decade
Bonnie Diamond from the Met Office told MailOnline the amber alert applies mainly to southern and eastern England.
She said: ‘We are also advising people wear sun screen, especially when the sun is at its highest SPF levels.
‘Even if you’re just in the sun for a short time – or a short commute – we are also advising people wear lighter clothing.’
Beaches were bursting on the first weekend of the school summer break, with a million visitors in Cornwall, 375,000 at Brighton across Saturday and Sunday, 250,000 in Blackpool, 200,000 in Bournemouth and 200,000 in Great Yarmouth.
But after a fun day in the sun many complained of how they could not take the heat.
Already, frustrated social media users have said they are ‘praying for rain’ after sleepless nights, yellow grass and being stuck without air-conditioning.
One person said on Twitter: ‘I’m over this weather now. Haven’t got enough summer clothes, too chubby to wear shorts. Bring on the cosy autumn/winter nights.’
Another added: ‘London in the heatwave.
‘1. I can’t remember the last time I slept properly
‘2. Sweaty is now my default state, all day every day
‘3. Public transport is now even more torturous (and malodorous)
‘4. Everyone’s constantly pi****.
‘Pining for Autumn.’
Commuters took to social media to warn the Central Line is baking underground during Britain’s summer heatwave
Twitter users said it was too hot on the Underground as London’s transport network seemed hotter under the city than it did at street level
Listen to health warnings, commuters have urged, as those using the underground networks in London this morning spoke of the unbearable heat
However, it is not likely office staff will be sent home since legally, there is no maximum temperature at which employers should release staff.
In 2006, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) stated that it believes a maximum temperature of 30C should be set by employers, with a maximum of 27C put into place for those doing strenuous work. However, this has not been Government backed.
There is advice for those lucky enough to be off work, this week, which is also the first week of the summer holidays for children in England.
Swimmers are being warned to wear wetsuits if they want to take a dip, to avoid being stung by swarms of giant jellyfish that have been spotted off the coast of Folkestone, in Kent.
Londoners joked about how hot it is in the city without air conditioning units at home and in the office as Britain basks in the sunshine
A woman in London claimed it was already 33C in the city at 9am – as temperatures are expected to get hotter as the week continues
The Met Office said 30C on Sunday (pictured cycling in Cambridge) would be followed by 32C on Monday and Tuesday, 34C on Wednesday and 35C possible on Thursday and Friday
A blast of hot air from Spain dubbed the ‘Mediterranean melt’ will force temperatures above the 86F (30C) mark all the way up until Friday, with temperatures set to peak on Thursday, making the UK hotter than Jamaica. Punting on ther river Cam in Cambridge on Monday got off to a sweltering start
Monika Wojtanowska, aged 29, (left) and Aneta, 26, cool off in the sea as the sizzling weather continues on Bournemouth beach on Sunday
A jogger runs on the burnt dry grass on Wimbledon Common (left), while a sunworshipper enjoys an ice cream in Hyde Park
Beaches were bursting yest again Sunday, with a million visitors over the weekend in Cornwall, 375,000 at Brighton across Saturday and Sunday, 250,000 in Blackpool, 200,000 in Bournemouth (pictured) and 200,000 in Great Yarmouth
Chris Lightwing, the logistics manager at Folkestone Rescue, a charity which helps to keep beaches safe, said that the jellyfish, which have a 1ft diameter and 24 tentacles and can weight up to 2.5kg, could ‘give a nasty sting’ to people enjoying the unprecedented heatwave.
Millions of daytrippers took to clogged roads, with traffic jams due on coastal routes including the A23 to Brighton, A31 to Dorset, A30 to Cornwall and M55 to Blackpool, at the weekend.
The Met Office said Sunday’s 30C would be followed by 32C on Monday and Tuesday, 34C on Wednesday and 35C possible on Thursday and Friday.
‘Off the-scale’ highs verging on July’s 36.7C temperature record, set on July 1, 2015, at Heathrow, were forecast by The Weather Outlook.
The high temperatures are ideal for a swim in the sea but some people in Folkestone, Hythe, and Dover say they have been left in agony after being stung.
Richard Greaves, 34, of Ashford, Kent, said he was stung after going for dip at Sunny Sands Beach in Folkestone last week.
He said: ‘I was swimming about 40ft out and was suddenly surrounded by loads of jellyfish – they looked huge.
‘I was stupid and tried to dive under them and ended up getting stung across my back and legs by their tentacles.’
He said he was helped out of the sea by onlookers, adding: ‘I was in agony for an hour or two, but eventually the pain subsided.’
Bookmakers Coral cut odds to 2/1 on temperatures beating Britain’s hottest temperature ever recorded, the 38.5C (101.3F) on August 10, 2003, at at Brogdale, near Faversham, Kent.
Britain will break its 33.0C hottest day of the year, set on June 28 at Porthmadog, west Wales, and be hotter than Montego Bay, Jamaica, and Acapulco, Mexico.
Temperatures across Europe and North Africa have soared as the heatwave refuses to release its stranglehold
The new hot spell is due to last for two weeks, with more heat next week after a slight temporary easing on Saturday and Sunday.
Is Britain facing a carrot shortage?
The chairman of the British Carrot Growers Association, has revealed the ground conditions are making carrot growing so tough there could be a national carrot shortage this winter.
Rodger Hobson says there has been a ‘perfect storm’ of poor growing conditions after the wintry ‘Beast from the East’ was followed by record smashing temperatures and what could be Britain’s driest summer for 225 years.
Britain consumes around 700,000 carrots a year, compared with 17 million consumed in China.
With much of Europe experiencing the same weather, there could be a shortage of imported carrots too.
Rodger Hobson said the Beast from the East storms in the spring and the summer heatwave could spell a carrot shortage
Met Office forecaster Simon Partridge said: ‘It’s getting warmer and we could see 35C by Thursday.
‘After 30C on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday look like 32C, with 34C possible on Wednesday and a good chance of over 34.5C by Thursday, and Friday similar.
‘Heat will arrive from the south, passing over the continent. It will be hottest in the South and East.’
Chris Lightwing, the logistics manager at Folkestone Rescue, has given some handy advice for sun-seekers if they are stung by a jellyfish.
He said: ‘There has been a recent increase in the number of jellyfish around Folkestone’s coast. Jellyfish can give a nasty sting, and should be avoided. Never attempt to pick up or handle jellyfish.
‘We have had reports of numerous members of the public being stung over the last two weeks.
‘When entering the water, please consider wearing protective clothing and footwear such as a full-length wetsuit and boots.
‘If you have been stung by a jellyfish, you should leave the water immediately and keep still.
‘Any remaining tentacles should be removed with tweezers whilst wearing gloves. Taking painkillers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen will help to lessen any pain or swelling. Weak vinegar can also be used to help neutralise the sting.
‘Do not apply any other substances (such as urine) to the affected area; these do not work and may make the injury worse.
‘If symptoms persist or worsen, please contact your GP or NHS 111 for advice. If you have difficulty breathing after being stung, you should seek medical attention immediately by calling 999.’
Is it too hot to walk my dog?
A Twitter user showed how dogs can burn their paws on the hot pavement during a heatwave
A warning has also been delivered to pet owners over walking dogs in the heat.
One dog owner took to Twitter to warn pets’ paws can burn on the hot pavement.
Animal lovers say you can test the pavement with your own feet.
If it’s too hot for you – it’s too hot for them.
The sun is at its hottest between 11am and 3pm. Between these hours it is not advised to walk your pet.
We recommend walking your dog in the morning or evening when they will not burn their paws on the pavement or be at increased risk of heatstroke.
Never leave animals in hot cars, conservatories, outbuildings or caravans, even if it’s just for a short while. Temperatures can quickly rise to 47°C (117°F) which can result in death.
Ensure pets always have access to fresh drinking water to help keep them cool – you can even put ice cubes in their water bowl.
Paddling pools can be bought for dogs to play in when the sun is out.
The Met Office said today’s 30C would be followed by 32C on Monday and Tuesday, 34C on Wednesday and 35C possible on Thursday and Friday
Jellyfish aren’t the only thing sun-seekers have to look out for during this unprecedented heatwave.
Richard Drinkwater, boss of the UK’s biggest inflatables aqua-fun park, promised refunds today after customers complained about bookings being cancelled because ‘brain damage’ toxins have appeared in the heatwave and people might swallow infected water as they splash about.
Several people claimed today they were out of pocket after Aqua Park Suffolk, which only opened on July 7th near Ipswich, said blue-green algae, which has ‘bloomed’ in the heatwave, had been found carpeting the surface of the reservoir.
He said the company was ‘sorry for the disappointment caused’ and would be contacting all customers booked into the splash park this weekend to inform them of the situation.
Professor Laurence Carvalho, from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, said blue-green algae has been a particular problem this summer.
He said: ‘Not only has it been very warm but it has also been very dry, which means they have not been flushed out of water courses by rain’ he said.
‘It is posing a particular risk to dogs who appear to be attracted by the smell.
Blue-green algae are microscopic, but clump together in visible colonies up to a few millimetres in size that can rise to the surface and form thin wispy green blooms or thick, paint-like scums.
Anglian Water, which manages the tourist attraction, said it had ‘taken the decision to temporarily close the water sports facilities and the Aqua Park with immediate effect as a precaution’.
Children are at greater risk than adults of developing problems because of their comparative lower body weight.
A statement on Anglian Water’s website said ‘While we know this will be disappointing for people booked into the Aqua Park or expecting to use the water sports facilities, the safety of the visitors is our top priority.
‘We will be testing the water twice daily and will reopen the facilities once algal levels return to normal.’
Shower for just four minutes! Water companies tell customers to cut their use ahead of hosepipe bans
A water company accused of wasting the equivalent of 175 Olympic-sized swimming pools every day is under fire for telling customers to limit their showers to four minutes.
United Utilities (UU) is preparing to impose a hosepipe ban for its three million households in north-west England from August 5.
Water chiefs are telling their customers to spend no more than four minutes showering to help save water amid a heatwave in Britain.
They even issued households with pebble-shaped timers to help them wash within the advised time limit.
But the advice has sparked a fierce backlash from angry customers, one of whom raged on UU’s website: ‘How much water do UU lose through leaks in four minutes?’
The firm has come under fire for the sheer amount of water wasted every day through leaking pipes.
Critics claim that if United Utilities – who paid chief executive Steve Mogford £2.3million in salary and bonuses last year – stopped the leaks then the ban could be avoided.
Earlier this week, MPs and councillors reacted angrily to fresh revelations about Mr Mogford’s lifestyle, branding his ownership of a luxury £2million yacht a ‘particularly galling example’ of excess.
Manchester Central Labour MP Lucy Powell added: ‘Constituents would be appalled to learn that, at a utility company which really should be a public asset, executives are paid so much they can afford to lead this kind of lifestyle.’
Bury North Labour MP James Frith said: ‘His customers would be dismayed to learn he has such a high pay packet through which he can afford to own a yacht.’
The pebble shaped timers (pictured) can help let people know how long they should be washing for. The firm has previously come under fire for the sheer amount of water wasted every day through leaking pipes
Twelve Greater Manchester MPs who have written to United Utilities complaining about the hosepipe ban at a time when the firm wastes so much water from leaks.
Cat Hobbs of We Own It, which campaigns for public ownership of utilities, said: ‘Water belongs to all of us, there’s no reason why we should bankroll lavish lifestyles for Mogford and his shareholders.’
Tim Roache, the GMB union’s general secretary, said: ‘Most people can’t sail off into the sunset on a luxury yacht whenever there’s a water shortage.
‘United Utilities waste more than 175 Olympic-sized swimming pools of water every day – plug the leaks and you won’t need a hosepipe ban.’
Customers who flout the ban could face criminal prosecution and fines of up to £1,000 if they use a hose to water their garden or plants or clean their cars, windows, paths and outdoor surfaces.
The hosepipe ban by the company is the first in England since 2012, when 20 million customers were affected.
Meet Britain’s first ever sniffer dog trained to detect water leaks
The 16-month old cocker spaniel, called Snipe, was a stray rescued in Ireland before he was headhunted to begin his training for the North West water company and sniff out water leaks
United Utilities (UU) is preparing to impose a hosepipe ban for its three million households in north-west England from August 5.
And the company, has turned, to Britain’s first sniffer dog to detect water leaks ahead of the ban.
UU loses 439.2million litres of water every day from leaks and has applied for permission to extract water from three Cumbrian lakes, including Windermere, as its reservoirs continue to run low.
The company has turned to Snipe, a 21-month-old cocker spaniel, which has undergone weeks of special training by ex-military personnel to detect tiny amounts of chlorine found in tap water.
Snipe will be used in rural areas where leaks are hardest to detect.
Owner Ross Stephenson, 32, the MD of Cape SPC, a pest extermination expert firm in Liverpool, has been putting Snipe through his paces since late last year.
He said: ‘All I did was start off with normal tap water, and then putting in extra chlorine levels to make it stronger.
‘So we just put a tiny bit of that in, so the dog understands the strongest odour is the one we want them to find.
‘We would have eight glass pots, one of them will have it in and every time the dog sniffs that pot he will get rewarded – a tennis ball.
‘What I had to do was take the pots outside first and start doing it in different environments and then I would take the pots away and then ended up having normal tap water, pouring it on the ground and getting the dog to search that.
‘So we want the dog to sit and stand and stare where the source is, so try to get the dog to stay there for 30 seconds, a ‘passive indication’.
Snipe the dog, with (left to right) Luke Jones, Ross Stephenson and Hannah Wardle, in Warrington where it is training to detect underground water leaks by smelling chlorine traces.
Mr Stephenson, from Bristol, set up his firm after leaving the military two years ago, where he served with the Royal Veterinary Corps as a Corporal, deploying to war-torn Afghanistan and Iraq.
His business partner Luke Jones, 27, from Bargoed, south Wales, served in the same military unit, using dogs to search for weapons, explosives and IEDs before transferring his skills to teach dogs to sniff out bed bugs – and now detecting water leaks.
Mr Jones added: ‘All the principles are basically exactly the same, it’s just a different setting. And less stress.’
Tap water consists of one part chlorine per million parts water – with a dog’s nose thought to be able to detect one particle of an odour or scent in a billion.
UU responsible for a network of 42,000 kilometres of pipes, fixes around 27,000 leaks a year, with a team of 140 personnel, using high tech drones, camera and sound detection equipment – and now their latest recruit, Snipe.
Hannah Wardle, regional leakage manager at UU, who described Snipe as ‘an invaluable asset’ in helping fix the problem of wasted water, said: ‘The north west of England is a notoriously wet region, and sorting the leaks from the puddles especially out in the fields can be a real challenge.
‘This is where we hope Snipe will really come into his own, as his sensitive nose can detect mains water at incredibly low concentrations.
‘With leakage detection it’s all about building up the evidence using a range of different technologies.
‘We’re trialling the use of satellites and drones to get a bird’s eye view of a particular area, but the devil is in the detail, and pinpointing the exact place to start digging is more difficult than you might think.’
Look up this Friday to spot the blood moon
A rare lunar eclipse will turn the moon a dramatic blood red on Friday.
Those trying to catching a glimpse will be pleased to know it will be the longest total lunar eclipse so far this century.
The moon will rise in the South East and the eclipse will begin at around 8.30pm in the UK, but stargazers will be able to see it properly at 8.50pm.
From 10.13pm onwards it will only be partially visible in the UK.
Lunar eclipses occur when the Earth passes between the sun and the moon. Blood moons happen because the Earth’s atmosphere then filters the sunlight, leaving only warm reddish tones to be cast on to the moon.
Friday’s crimson moon will be visible for around 103 minutes – but it is thought Britons will only see it for 84 minutes as the moon will be below the horizon when the eclipse starts.
Astronomer Tom Kerss, of the Royal Observatory Greenwich, said: ‘You get a true sense of the solar system moving – and that in itself is a really dramatic experience. It is safe to watch with the naked eye. You could use a telescope but, to be frank, it will be just as dramatic to watch it without aids as the red moon slowly rises in the sky over Britain and the shadow of the Earth passes from its surface.’
The best vantage points will be from across eastern Africa, the Middle East, and central Asia.
Lunar eclipses are different to solar eclipses, which happen when the moon passes in front of the sun.
Cumbria’s ‘lost city of Atlantis’ emerges from the deep
It is known as Cumbria’s lost city of Atlantis – because it has been submerged in water for the best part of 83 years.
But thanks to the dry weather, visitors can now catch a glimpse of the sunken Lake District village of Mardale Green.
The village is centuries old but has rarely been seen since the 1930s, when it was abandoned so that Haweswater Reservoir could be built.
As water levels have dropped over the past few weeks, dry stone walls and roads have been revealed. Tourists can now walk across a bridge and among the ruins of farms and homes. Villagers were evicted from their homes in the 1930s and most of the buildings were blown up by Royal Engineers, who used them for demolition practice. Coffins were removed from the graveyard and buried elsewhere.
The area has had one of the driest Julys on record so far, with just 13 per cent of the expected average rainfall, the Met Office said. A spokesman said: ‘It has been exceptionally dry in those areas.
‘The driest July on record was in 1925, but it seems that we are on track to break that record at the end of this month.’
The stone wall remains of Mardale Green village have now been revealed
Meanwhile, it’s 104F in Japan
A severe heatwave in Japan has caused at least 30 deaths and more than 12,000 people to be hospitalised.
Temperatures reached 40.7C (105.2F) in central Japan last week – and the scorching weather shows no signs of easing.
A six-year-old boy died of heatstroke last week. On Saturday, at least 11 people, mostly elderly citizens, died from suspected heatstroke. A record 3,091 ambulances were dispatched in Tokyo that day.
Yesterday’s temperatures exceeded 35C (95F) at 233 points across the nation.
In Tokyo, bathers were spotted packed into a pool at the Toshimaen amusement park, pictured above. The capital has seen recent temperatures peak at 36C (97F).
Visitors jostle each other at a pool in Toshimaen amusement park in Tokyo, Japan
Heatwave is leaving Britain’s seas glowing: Hottest summer for decades creates a rare and beautiful phenomenon in the UK
A photographer snapped these stunning images of the sea glowing blue as millions of plankton lit up like fireflies.
Photographer Tim Bow captured the rare natural phenomenon off the coast of Port Talbot, Wales, last week, amidst a spike in the sightings of bioluminescent plankton.
Shimmering seas: Millions of bioluminescent plankton glowed blue under the night sky
Natural phenomenon: Bioluminescence is the emission of light by a living organism
Scientists believe the phenomenon is the result of plankton being disturbed, causing them to emit light though a complex chemical reaction.
It is thought the recent surge in sightings of bioluminescent plankton has been caused by the heatwave.
Photographer Tim Bow snapped these breathtaking images on Friday night.
Brilliant: The stunning blue glow lit up the waters of Port Talbot, pictured
Disturbed: It is believed the heatwave has caused a spike in the number of sightings
Stunning: Residents admire the stunning cobalt blue glow of the plankton in Port Talbot
He said: ‘Bioluminescent plankton is randomly popping up at different locations around Wales.
‘It’s been spotted at different locations along the South Wales coast in the past week although it’s slightly unpredictable.
‘It’s believed that the increased sightings are from the high temperatures we have had over the past few weeks warming the waters around the UK.’
Bioluminescence is the production and emission of light by a living organism.
It occurs widely in marine vertebrates and invertebrates, as well as in some fungi and microorganisms such as phytoplankton.
What is bioluminescence?
Bioluminescence is the production and emission of light by a living organism.
It occurs widely in marine vertebrates and invertebrates, as well as in some fungi and microorganisms such as phytoplankton.
The word comes from the Greek ‘bios’ for living and the Latin ‘lumen’ for light.
Bioluminescence is a type of light energy produced by a chemical reaction.
Different types of animals use bioluminescence in different ways.
Deep sea squid use it for counter illumination camouflage so they match their environmental light, but Anglefish use it to lure prey with a light-up dangling appendage from their head that draws in smaller fish, which they can eat.
Fireflies use bioluminescence to attract mates by flashing their abdomens, while their larvae use it to repel predators.
Millipedes also glow to put predators off of eating them.