Today was the hottest July day ever in London: 35°C (95°F). At this writing it has cooled somewhat, to 34°C (93°F)—but it's still 36°C (97°F) in Paris where the Health Ministry is blaming the heat on nine deaths (French). The Times of London reports:
Today has been the hottest July day ever with temperatures eclipsing 36 degrees (97°F) in Surrey—surpassing the previous record which has been held since 1911.
At 3pm, Charlwood in Surrey was the hottest place in the country, with Heathrow close behind, recording 35 degrees, and extreme heat also felt in Oxfordshire, Wilkshire and Hampshire.
The full results will not be analysed until tomorrow morning, but it seems unlikely now that temperatures will be higher than the all-time record, 38.5 degrees (101°F) reached in Faversham, Kent, in August 2003.
For comparison, the hottest day in Chicago this year was yesterday (36.1°C, 97°F), and the hottest day of the past four years was last July 25th (38.9°C, 102°F). (Fortunately for me, on that particular day Anne and I traveled from Galway to Killarney, Ireland, where it was 20°C (68°F) and delightful.)