Suffolk sizzles in hottest temperatures of the year

Sunshine in the Abbey Gardens
Sunshine in the Abbey Gardens
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What a difference a few hours make when the sun comes out.

This morning may have looked as if the cool cloudiness which saw the week start with maximum daytime temperatures of 11 and 12 degrees C would continue, but by 2.30pm the Weather Channel was reporting temperatures in Bury St Edmunds of 23 degrees — the hottest so far this year.

Hot weather pics.   Mikey Arbon (2) cools off.

Hot weather pics. Mikey Arbon (2) cools off.

That means the Abbey Gardens were sunning themselves in the same temperature as Barcelona and were a degree warmer than Athens.

So instead of lunch at their desks, office workers took their sandwiches off to open spaces and restaurants soon saw their outdoor tables packed.

But the heat seems to have caught pet owners unawares with the RSPCA reporting a huge increase in the number of calls to rescue animals in hot places. In the east the charity says in three days it has had 40 incidents involving 103 animals, including 37 incidents involving 45 dogs.

RSPCA East Superintendent Kelly Rivers said: “Most people seem to know the ‘don’t leave dogs in hot cars’ message, but I think they just don’t think anything bad will happen to their pets, particularly if they’re just leaving them for a few minutes.

“What people need to realise is that the next animal to die in a hot car, conservatory or outbuilding could be their pet - that’s how serious this is.”

When the cloud disappears, or the sun moves round onto a car parked in the shade, the RSPCA says the temperature inside can soar to 47 degrees within 60 minutes when the outside temperature is just 22 degrees and even a garden without shade can prove too much.

The weathermen say the temperatures will start to drop on Friday but don’t put the sun lotion away, or leave Fido in the car, because it will remain sunny with temperatures in the high teens and low 20s over the weekend.