- Today could be the last day of 2018 to bring hot weather, with 76F (25C) temperatures in Lincolnshire
- Britain has enjoyed hottest summer on record after warmest April day since the 1940s over past six months
- Met Office forecasts temperatures around 'normal' next week then 'colder than average' for rest of October
- Forecasters also warn of 'wet and windy weather from mid-October, with the rain possibly turning to snow'
It's been a scorching six months with the hottest summer on record after the warmest April day since the 1940s.
But Britain's winter is now fast approaching - and today could be the last day of 2018 to bring hot weather, with the 76F (25C) temperatures experienced in Lincolnshire this afternoon unlikely to be repeated until next year.
However, the warmth will not be shared across Britain today, with the mercury expected to only just get up to 50F (10C) in some parts of Scotland - and the lows overnight into tomorrow could drop under 40F (4C).
The highs are expected to be around 63F (17C) this weekend, before the Met Office forecasts temperatures 'close to or a little below normal' next week, with some 'chilly nights particularly in the South' and a risk of frosts.
Forecasters say the rest of October is expected to bring temperatures 'generally colder than average, but with some milder interludes at times', although there will also be some locally frosty nights and morning fog.
And snow could be on the way, with the Met Office telling of 'a greater chance of spells of wet and windy weather from mid-October onwards, with the rain possibly turning to snow at times over the highest ground in the north'.
There are also claims that snow could last for months this winter, thanks to a weak El Niño. This the warm phase of the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO), which is the largest natural fluctuation in the earth's climate system.The surface ocean temperature this winter is expected to be around 0.5C to 1C above the long-term average – which is still significant, despite it being lower than the extreme event in 2015 which was 3C above normal.
Met Office head of long-term climate prediction Professor Adam Scaife said: 'Understanding the influence that the ENSO cycle can have on the world's weather patterns is a useful tool for long-range weather forecasting.
'But it's important to understand that it's not the only factor which determines our weather here in the UK.