Britain has endured the hottest day this year as the NHS warned it is under heavy pressure to treat vulnerable people put at risk by the extreme heat.
Warnings came too from firefighters across the country who have been battling against grassland blazes in the dry scorched earth.
Drivers have been urged not to throw rubbish from vehicles amid a surge in fires near busy roads, while the head of London Fire Brigade has called for a temporary ban on barbecues in public spaces.
Shocking photographs of one such wildfire in Hythe near Southampton, Hampshire, showed flames raging 20 feet in the air as a firefighter desperately attempted to tame the blaze.
The aggressive grass fire spread over an acre of land in just 15 minutes.
The cause of the blaze is unknown, but temperatures in the area have consistently remained in the high twenties – with the soaring heat and dry weather set to continue into August.
Fire crews have been busy as they continue to battle countryside fires.
The photographs were taken by 54-year-old shopkeeper Mel Port, who was preparing a barbecue in his back garden when he noticed the fire.
The fire must have only just started when I dialled 999, he said.
I just grabbed my camera and walked over there to take some pictures. The fire was blowing in a certain direction so I was able to stand on the other side and get very close.
It must have covered around half a football pitch, but luckily the fire crew got here very quickly and had it under control within about 20 minutes.
There were 56 fires on grass verges next to Englands motorways and major A-roads in the 10 days to Wednesday, Highways England reported.
While London Fire Commissioner Dany Cotton, who has written to all London councils suggesting the barbecue ban, said: I have attended a number of these large grass fires and it never ceases to shock me how many abandoned smouldering barbecues fire crews spot.
In these arid conditions, barbecuing on dry grass is not just thoughtless, its reckless.
The hottest day of the year reached relentless new heights with temperatures hitting 35C in south east England.
But it will only hold the record for 24 hours as Friday is set to be even hotter, with forecasters warning it could reach 37C.