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HOTOBER THE 27TH; Today's the warmest day in over 100 years.

Byline: By PAUL BYRNE

TEMPERATURES are set to soar to 21C (70F) today - making this the hottest October 27 for 117 years.

The mini-heatwave will help to make the entire month one of the five warmest Octobers on record.

The current highest temperature for October 27 is 20.3C (68.5F) - measured in London in 1888.

Met Office forecaster Robin Thwaytes said: "We are getting winds all the way from North Africa. They are coming through Spain and France.

"It will be six or seven degrees above what we would normally expect for the time of year, particularly as it is now getting into late October."

He added: "I think it will only last for a day, because cooler weather is coming in from the west. It will still be mild, but not exceptionally mild."

Michael Dukes, of the PA WeatherCentre, said: "It's probably the last time we will see these temperatures until something like April of May."

And within weeks the UK is expected to be in the grip of an icy blast in preparation for the coldest winter in a decade. Siberian weather fronts are due to arrive by December, plunging the country into a long deep freeze.

Some experts are predicting a repeat of the winter of 1962-1963 when Britain was frozen from Boxing Day until April with temperatures averaging .2C (32F).

Chief meteorologist Ewen McCallum said: "There is the potential for long periods of up to two weeks where the temperature may not rise much above freezing."

The Met Office has issued an amber alert, urging emergency services to brace themselves for the worst. The National Grid and power regulator Ofgem have warned of gas shortages.

The severe winter prediction comes from using North Atlantic Oscillation which observes atmospheric pressure over the ocean. But there's some good news - it's only 65 per cent accurate.
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Oct 27, 2005
Words:308
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