Could the UK be set for an Indian summer in September?

Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 1:40 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 2:25 pm
Temperatures could rise with an Indian summer on the horizon (Photo: Shutterstock)

According to the Met Office, the first day of autumn takes place on 1 September and as such, people across the country are preparing for temperatures to dip.

However, an Indian summer could be about to warm things up - this is everything you need to know about the weather phenomenon.

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Will the weather get warmer again?

BBC weather forecaster Nick Miller said in a report that across the country, the UK could reach temperatures in the high double figures - in some places, as high as 22C.

Met Office forecaster Oli Claydon, told the Sun Online: "There will be pockets of pleasant weather in the week, with warm and drier weather expected on the weekend.

"Although there is a rain warning covering one area, there will be plenty of dry conditions around and any sunshine will certainly feel warm."

Jim Dale of British Weather Services said: “The end of September is looking more settled.

“There is a fairly reasonable chance of an Indian summer bringing a couple of weeks of fine weather.

“This will be more noticeable in the north of the country where the warmth of the summer has not been so plentiful.”

As we move into the autumn months, we expect temperatures to get cooler, not warmer, which is why we call an unexpected warm weather spell an Indian Summer.

What is an Indian summer?

The Met Office describes an Indian summer as “a warm, calm spell of weather that occurs in autumn”.

The first recorded use of the phrase appears in a letter written by John de Crevecoeur, dated 17 January 1778, in which he described Mohawk county in the US as experiencing rain which “is followed by an interval of calm and warm which is called the Indian summer”.

In the UK, it was first used in the early 19th century, however the concept of a warm summer spell was not new to the UK.

Previously, ‘Saint Martin’s summer’ was used widely across Europe to describe warm weather surrounding St Martin's Day, on 11 November.

The Met Office states that there is “no statistical evidence to suggest that such warm spells recur at any particular time each year - warm spells during the autumn months are not uncommon”.

The warmest recorded temperatures in the UK in October and November are:

  • 29.9C on 1 October 2011 in Gravesend, Kent
  • 22.4C on 1 November 2015 in Trawsgoed, Ceredigion