Brits have been warned to brace themselves for another heatwave hitting the UK in August which could last longer than the record breaking 40c heatwave in July.

Temperatures over the coming days will remain lower than last month’s scorching 43.C but the warmth will continue over a “prolonged period”, the Met Office has said.

What different weather warnings mean

Met Office update on UK heatwave this week

Met Office chief forecaster Steve Willington said: “We could see parts of the UK entering heatwave conditions if the above-average temperatures last for three days or more. Many areas of the UK, especially the south will witness temperatures several degrees higher than average, but these values are likely to be well below the record-breaking temperatures we saw in mid-July.

“As the high pressure builds there is very little meaningful rain in the forecast, especially in those areas in the south of England, which experienced very dry conditions last month. Elsewhere in the UK, such as in northern England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, rain-bearing weather fronts will make limited headway against the high pressure, bringing some rain to north-western parts of the UK."

Fire warning to UK households ahead of August heatwave

People have been urged not to host barbecues in the tinder-dry conditions after 15 homes were evacuated following a garden fire that spread out of control in Essex.

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service said around 40 people were forced to flee properties due to a blaze that damaged more than a dozen homes on Saturday.

Area manager Neil Fenwick said: “While summer weather usually provides the perfect opportunity to host a barbecue or gather around a chiminea in the evening, we’re strongly discouraging people from having any kinds of fires at the moment.

“The ground across Essex is extremely dry allowing fires to spread easily and quickly.”

The fire service also warned against setting off fireworks or sky lanterns, which could spark a “large-scale” blaze in parched areas.

The whole of England and Wales is likely to see such weather continue over the coming week as high pressure builds across the UK.

Parts of north-west Scotland may be cloudier and breezier up to Wednesday, but fine weather is expected for all areas of the country later in the week.