'Three more days' of Indian summer

Half-term holidaymakers have three more days of unseasonal warm weather to enjoy before cooler conditions return to the UK, forecasters said today.

Today, tomorrow and Saturday will see temperatures in parts of England reach 19C - well above average and making this week one of the warmest ends to October on record.

Yesterday saw Benson in Oxfordshire top the UK's temperature chart after the mercury reached a balmy 20C.

People across the country flocked to parks and beaches as they made of the most of the sunny and settled conditions.

Matt Dobson, a forecaster at MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said a foggy start today and more cloud cover would peg temperatures to a maximum of 18C.

"But it's still looking warm for the next two days, especially across eastern England and in London," he said. "Saturday is looking particularly mild."

Cooler, more unsettled weather is expected to start arriving by Saturday night, he said.

Bands of rain, some heavy with strong winds, will also move across the UK.

The current mild weather is being produced by a low pressure out in the Atlantic and a high pressure over Scandinavia, which are sending warm winds up from southern France and central Africa.