Edinburgh Weather: Lothians set for July heatwave

The GFS map forecasts a heatwave. Picture: comp

The GFS map forecasts a heatwave. Picture: comp

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IT’S the news sun worshippers have been praying for – a return to the scorching temperatures that bathed the country last summer.

And now some forecasters are predicting the return of heatwave conditions in the Capital, with the mercury set to soar again by next weekend.

Twins Sophie and Sarah Cowe, aged three, play on Portobello beach. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Twins Sophie and Sarah Cowe, aged three, play on Portobello beach. Picture: Ian Georgeson

The prediction of a surge of high pressure across the UK was issued by a French-based Global Forecast System (GFS) Their satellite image shows Scotland in the centre of a high pressure spell which should see temperatures soar well into the 20s, matchingthose in the Mediterranean.

That has fueled hopes of a scorching July and frequent repeats of the scenes yesterday when hundreds of sunseekers flocked to Portobello beach.

BBC weatherman Derek Brockway took to Twitter to welcome the news, saying: “This would be nice – if it happens! GFS chart for July 11th #high pressure.”

Met Office staff however sounded a note of caution. Despite being the most popular weather reader in the world,they said that the medium-range forecast systems used by GFS are not always reliable.

But beachside bars and those living beside other beauty city spots are braced for some sizzling summer weather.

Alison McGill, owner of the Dalriada bar on Portobello Promenade, said the sunny climate brings a “big increase in trade” and more traffic down to the beach.

“We are absolutely hoping it will continue,” she said.

One of the managers of the nearby Beaten Docket pub, said trade “always goes up” when temperatures soar, while Robert Brown, assistant manager at the Espy bar in Bath Street, said they always saw an “extra hit” in fine weather.

VisitScotland claimed a heatwave would be a “welcome bonus” for the city and the 13 million visitors it attracts every year.

Manuela Calchini, regional director at VisitScotland, said: “It’s great news for our brilliant array of visitor attractions as well as for our cafes, restaurants and bars. It’s a great chance to get out and about and explore what the city has to offer.”

Sunbathing hot spots such as the Meadows are set to be flooded with visitors during the warm spell.

Heather Goodare, convener of the Friends of the Meadows and Bruntsfield Links, urged sun lovers to enjoy the surroundings but cut back on smoky barbecues.

“When it’s warm they flock to the Meadows and the place is absolutely covered,” she said.

“Of course we welcome people to the Meadows but we would ask people to please respect it – we do not want any environmental vandalism.”

Edinburgh’s highest ever temperature of 31C was recorded in 1975 but forecasts indicate that high will not be repeated this month.

Last week, the News reported how top temperatures in the Capital eclipsed the Bahamas and Rio de Janeiro when they soared to 26C – a record for the year.

Dr Liz Bentley, chief executive of the Royal Meteorological Society, said Britain was set for a “plume of warm weather over the next couple of days”.