PEOPLE across Solihull did their best to keep cool as the heatwave escalated to record levels.
The mercury rose and The Met Office has issued its first red weather warning – danger to life – for the heat.
The record temperature for England was broken when an area of Lincolnshire recorded a temperature of 40.3°C.
People were out and about in Solihull but those who were found sanctuary in under umbrellas and in shady spots.
Solihull Council advised parents to consider sending their child to school, adding that each individual school will be making that decision.
The Council also asked residents to put their bins out early as collections were set to start at 6am to help crews beat the heat.
The Council tweeted that garden waste was not collected in Hillfield and St Alphege but residents were told to leave the bins out and they would be collected as soon as crews were able to.
West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS) tweeted crews from Solihull and Sheldon joined those from Binley, Canley and Warwickshire to put out a ‘large fire in the open’ in Hob Lane in Balsall Common.
WMFS also reported an increase in calls peaking between 4pm and 8pm on Monday, July 18) when, at one stage, the service was attending 32 separate incidents simultaneously.
WMFS added: “The incidents, a lot of which were weather-related, ranged greatly with the largest and most notable incident being across the county border at Lickey Hills, where six fire engines and over 30 firefighters from WMFS supported our colleagues at Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue with their efforts to tackle the outdoor blaze.”
Plenty of measures were put in place at Hatton Country World to keep the animals cool.
The pigs were regularly hosed down with a sprinkler and frozen carrots were given to the ponies, shire horses, guinea pigs and rabbits.
West Midlands Ambulance Service reported a rise in the number of heat related calls to both the 999 and 111 services with calls about sunburn, heat stroke, barbecue burns, dehydration, breathing difficulties and from people enjoying the outdoors who are ill prepared.
Likewise, NHS111 saw a 525 per cent increase in searches on its website for heat exhaustion advice.
Health chiefs advised people to drink plenty of fluids and stay hydrated, stay out of the sun between the hottest times of the day – between 11am and 3pm – and to wear suitable loose clothing.
After temperatures rose close to 40°C on Monday and Tuesday, they returned to the mid 20s on Wednesday – common for this time of year.