Thursday saw the thermometer soar to 27.6C, being 6.9C above the 34-year August average, as we enjoyed 11.71 hours of strong sunshine. The UV level again in the Very High category.
In the afternoon the wind veered into the northwest.
At dawn this morning fog formed in the valleys then became much more widespread limiting visibility to 200m, but varying as the fog band moved around.
It was a mild night as the thermometer did not fall below 12.9C, being 1.5C above the August average. By 08.00 the temperature had risen to 17.4C with the promise of much more sunshine and a hot day to follow.
Update at 14.32: maximum temperature of 28.1C.
Late burst of sun pushes maximum to 28.6C at 16.05
What a month! With 249 hours of strong sunshine, which was more than double the average for the past few years, and little rain it could rightly be called a summer month.
There was only 1 day without sunshine, the 29th, when on many days the total rose into double figures, the highest being 15.84 hours on the 8th closely followed by 15.72 hours on the 7th.
The result of so much strong sunshine, when the instrument detects that the strength is greater than 100watts/sq. metre, was to boost the temperature so that there were only two days when the maximum was below average. The coolest day produced a maximum of only 19.1C on the 29th being 3.1C below the average.
The peak days were 30.4C and 30.1C on the 26th and 8th respectively when the average was 22.25C. Although the mean temperature for July was 2.8C above the 34-year average it was principally down to hot days as many nights were quite cool. The analysis shows that the mean maximum was 4.6C above average whereas the mean minimum was only 0.9C above average. The coolest night gave a reading of 9.0C when the average was 11.7C.
July 2018 was the second hottest since my records began in 1984, which was 0.3C lower than the record set in 2006.
The second major feature of July was the lack of rainfall. It was the fifth driest July since my records began in 1984 with just 25.1mm of rainfall when the average was 60.9mm.
The contrasting years were 10.1mm in 1999 and 127.2mm in 2007.
The month produced 24 dry days, with the wettest bringing a welcome 11.5mm on the 28th.
Not only was it a very dry month, the equivalent rainfall lost to the atmosphere through evaporation from ground sources and plant life was 123mm.
Analysing the rainfall for June and July I find that the combined rainfall for both months was 85mm below the 34-year average. This only tells half the story, as the combined loss through evaporation was 233mm.
There were 3 days when fog formed overnight that quickly dispersed as the sun got to work. Thunder was heard on 1 day.