UK records warmest day of the year with more spring sunshine in store
The London Eye can be seen from St James’ Park, central London (James Manning/PA)
PA Wire/PA Images - James Manning

The UK has basked in the warmest day of the year so far.

The Met Office said the mercury reached 17.5C in the West Sussex village of Wiggonholt on Friday, while it hit 17C in Gogerddan in Cardiganshire, Wales.

Warmest UK March temperatures(PA Graphics)PA Graphics/Press Association Images - PA Graphics

The warm weather is set to continue on Saturday, which promises to be a “cracking day if you like spring sunshine”, according to Met Office meteorologist Alex Deakin.

Temperatures are set to soar to 15C to 18C across the UK – levels well above average for March.

The highest temperatures will be reached in north-west Scotland, where the mercury could hit 20C in some sheltered glens.

Many places will be balmier than Ibiza, where temperatures of 16C are predicted.

A woman looks at magnolia trees at Kew Gardens, south-west LondonA woman looks at magnolia trees at Kew Gardens, south-west London (Steve Parsons/PA)PA Wire/PA Images - Steve Parsons

Forecaster Richard Miles told the PA news agency it would be “very fine and warm” and “sunny for many people”.

The pleasant conditions are thanks to the jet stream tracking well to the north of the UK, letting high pressure dominate from the east, he explained.

The high pressure is centred over Denmark, which is primed to see its highest pressure record ever, the Met Office said.

However, gusty winds will blow across southern England, northern Ireland and western Scotland, which could make it feel a little cooler than the high temperatures would suggest.

The high pressure is expected to pull away from Britain on Sunday, and while temperatures are still expected to be in the double-digits, the day is forecast to be slightly cooler and cloudier.

Daffodils line the roadside in St James\u2019 Park, central LondonDaffodils line the roadside in St James’ Park, central London (James Manning/PA)PA Wire/PA Images - James Manning

Some showers are also possible in south-east England, but dry weather should prevail everywhere else with sunshine particularly in western areas.

Mr Miles said it would be “a bit cooler Sunday, Monday, and then high pressure gets back in charge and things settle down again from Tuesday”.

“It’s safe to say that high pressure will continue to dominate for certainly the first half of next week,” he said, indicating more clear skies and sunshine are on the way.

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