Scottish village may have set record for warmest January weather, hitting 19.6C | UK weather

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A village in Scotland has provisionally set the UK record for the warmest temperature in January after hitting 19.6C, the Met Office said.

The balmy temperature in Kinlochewe in the north-west Highlands was recorded on Sunday. It is likely to have surpassed the previous record of 18.3C in 2003 recorded in the villages Inchmarlo and Aboyne in Aberdeenshire and Aber, Ceredigion in Wales, which reached the same temperature in 1958 and 1971.

This latest high temperature, if confirmed, would also be the record for a winter’s day in Scotland. In a post on X, the Met Office said: “There has provisionally been a new UK January daily max temperature record set today at Kinlochewe where the temperature reached 19.6C.

“This beats the previous January UK record of 18.3C set at Inchmarlo and Aboyne in 2003 and Aber in 1958 and 1971.”

Kathyrn Chalk, the operational meteorologist at the Met Office, said the warm temperature was caused by tropical, warmer air “coming up from the south and south – which has been all drawn up on Sunday.”

Forecasters have also attributed the unseasonably warm weather to a meteorological pattern called the Foehn Effect. This occurs in mountainous areas, creating wet and cold conditions on one side of a mountain and warm and dry conditions on the other.

“This is where the air is forced to rise over the mountain and then as it does so that causes the air to lift higher in the atmosphere,” said Chalk. “But then on the descent it compresses and warms again.”

As well as potentially setting the record, however, Kinlochewe was also covered by a yellow weather warning for wind on Sunday.

Yellow weather warnings for rain are in place for parts of the north-west of England on Monday and on Tuesday until 5am with a yellow wind warning on Wednesday for parts of northern Scotland, the Outer Hebrides and the Northern Isles from 7am to 7pm. Winds could reach up to 85mph across exposed areas, and rain is forecast.

“We’ve got that low-pressure system towards the north and that is where we have the wind warning,” Chalk said. “It will turn very windy with outbreaks of rain on Wednesday with that clearing through and then it will just stay more blustery through into Thursday.”

She added that we can expect to see temperatures returning to average for the time of year from Monday.

This blast of January warmth follows last year’s very mild Christmas Eve experienced by some in the UK. Temperatures in Heathrow, south-west London, hit 15.3C, well above average for the time of year, making it the warmest 24 December since 1997.

The highest Christmas Eve temperatures of 15.5C were set in Aberdeen and Banff in Scotland in 1931.