Beachgoers lie in the sun in Chichester, England on July 23, 2018.
Jack Taylor//Getty Images
Beachgoers lie in the sun in Chichester, England on July 23, 2018.
London CNN —  

This summer was the hottest on record in England, and the joint-hottest in the UK, according to the UK Met Office.

The average temperature in England from June to August 2018 was 17.2 degrees Celsius (63 degrees Fahrenheit), beating the previous record set in 1976 by 0.2 degrees.

Across the UK – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – the average temperature was 15.8 degrees Celsius (60 degrees Fahrenheit), matching previous records set in 2006, 2003 and 1976.

According to the Met Office, a longer term perspective suggests this year is not an anomaly, but another sign of a warming global climate.

An average temperature above 17 degrees Celsius has only been recorded 10 times since 1659 and six of those have occurred since 1976, the Met Office said.

In July, the Environmental Audit Committee – a cross-party panel of UK lawmakers – warned that the risk of heatwaves was growing and that Britain was unprepared for periods of extreme heat.

It is not just the UK that has experienced soaring temperatures this summer. A heatwave has swept across much of Europe, contributing to wildfires in Sweden, Greece and Germany.

Outside Europe, heat records have been broken across North America, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. Dozens of people died in Japan and South Korea due to the sweltering temperatures.

Data released in July by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) showed 2018 on pace to be the fourth hottest year on record.