SUSSEX sweltered in what was its hottest day on record today.

Provisional temperatures from the Met Office show the mercury hit 37.6C in the village of Herstmonceux.

The high, which came at 1.40pm today, beat the previous Sussex record by a full two degrees centigrade... exactly 16 years later to the day.

It was on July 19, 2006, that Sussex recorded 35.6C in Wiggonholt, near Pulborough.

Other areas of the county have also been hit with extreme heat with Wiggonholt again a hot spot. It reached 34.8C at 1.37pm.

For the first time ever the UK temperature exceeded 40C - Heathrow recorded a high of 40.2C at 12.50pm.

The Met Office strssed these are provisional figures and will not be verified for a few days. 

Brighton is also likely to have had its hottest day ever. It was predicted temperatures would surpass the city's record of 32.8C, recorded in the heatwave of June 1976.

An amber warning remains in place across Sussex for extreme heat, with the potential to cause serious illness or danger to life.

Schools across the county have allowed students to wear PE kits, closed early or not opened at all due to the extreme heat, while train operators have urged commuters not to travel unless absolutely necessary due to speed restrictions and the potential for severe disruption.