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France basks in record-high temperatures

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France basks in record-high temperatures
The beach in Nice was a nice place to be on Sunday. Photo: AFP
10:35 CET+01:00
For the second November weekend in a row the French were able to sunbathe on beaches and in parks as much the country enjoyed record temperatures for this time of year.

A weekend in November normally means staying indoors and escaping the rain and wind.

But not in France this year.

For the second weekend in succession, beaches in the south and west of the country were full of bathers enjoying some very unseasonal sunshine, as were the parks of the various towns and cities.

On Sunday in the Pyrenees-Atlantiques département the thermometer hit 29C. That kind of temperature would be considered high for summer in the region, let alone for the second weekend of November.

But it wasn't just the south west that enjoyed the sun, with the mercury topping 27C in the Auvergne region of central France. In Bordeaux 26C was recorded and in Paris it hit 20C.

Record-high temperatures also hit Burgundy where the mercury reached 24.1C in Chablis, 1.5C higher than the 1966 record for this time of year, when it hit 22.6C.

And in Saint-Martial, Dordogne, a temperature of 25.1C was recorded on Sunday - that's the highest since 1966. On Saturday, the temperature in parts of the Lot reached the highest since 1948.

Only the region of Languedoc Roussillon missed out on the summer-like sun thanks to a southerly wind bringing cloud. Although temperatures were still a mild 16C.

One French meteorological expert Geuillaume Sachet told Direct Matin the freakish warm spell was probably linked to climate change.

“This is an abnormal period due to its intensity and its persistence,” he said, adding that global warming accentuates this phenomenon and we must be “concerned”.  

The weekend chaleur came after temperatures on Friday were the warmest on record for several parts of France with the mercury rising to 8C above normal in the south west.

In the Dordogne the thermometer hit 24C on Friday and in the Aquitaine region of the south west the mercury hit 27C on Friday.

But sadly for those who are not fans of cold weather, the temperatures are set to dip slightly from Monday onward, though they will remain above average for the season for the coming few days.

And most weather experts warn that the recent warm spell gives us no clue about how the winter will be, so we may still be sitting inside under blankets by the end of the month, even it seems unlikely.

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