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Marks and Spencer in Canterbury sell winter coats as temperatures soar

By Gazette reporter

As Canterbury basks in near-record heatwave conditions, one store is unveiling a fur-lined coat range.

While sun-seekers across the district search for their shorts and sandals, staff at Marks and Spencer’s are putting out quilted jackets which, to some, are more fitting for a frosty November night.

Marks and Spencer's range of padded jackets and fur-lined coats has arrived as heatwave warnings have been issued for Kent

Marks and Spencer's range of padded jackets and fur-lined coats has arrived as heatwave warnings have been issued for Kent

Temperatures were expected to peak for the region at more than 35C (95F).

One shopper said: “I couldn’t believe it when I saw the fur-lined coats. I had to do a double-take.

“It was about 30 degrees outside and they were trying to sell what looked like thick winter coats.

Marks and Spencer in Canterbury

Marks and Spencer in Canterbury

“I know it’s good to be prepared, but I can’t see how anyone would be thinking about buying a new coat in this weather - unless they spend their summer holidays in the Arctic.”

Temperatures may come close to the record held by Brogdale near Faversham, which reached 38.5C (101.3F) in 2003.

According to some forecasts, extreme humidity could see figures within the region reaching as high as 40C (104F).

Marks and Spencer spokesman Amy Ashford said: "We offer a wide range of products for our customers and as part of this we have year-round lines of coats and jackets.

"Our current range features lightweight jackets, some with removable hoods, which give an extra layer of warmth on cool summer evenings."

Clare Rigden and Terry Chittenden out for a paddle in the Stour at the Westgate Gardens

Clare Rigden and Terry Chittenden out for a paddle in the Stour at the Westgate Gardens

The NHS and the Met Office have issued health warnings about how to deal with scorching summer conditions, which have been predicted to come close to the UK’s temperature peaks.

Weather expert Nathan Rao, a former KM Group news editor, revealed that Canterbury and the east Kent area is set for a sustained spell of high temperatures over the next two weeks.

Aidan, five, and Isla Rose, 10, enjoy ice creams at Toddlers Cove in Canterbury.

Aidan, five, and Isla Rose, 10, enjoy ice creams at Toddlers Cove in Canterbury.

He said: “East Kent could be heading towards one of the hottest spells of heatwave weather on record.

“Kent traditionally records some of the highest temperatures of the summer and this week could see records topple. With two weeks of warm weather on the way, expect the beaches and parks to be packed.”

As a result, the Met Office warned that higher temperatures could potentially be dangerous to health and urged caution for those spending an extended period of time outdoors.

Dr Paul Cosford, director for health protection at Public Health England (PHE), offered advice on handling temperatures.

He said: “Older people and those with long-term illnesses are particularly vulnerable to the effects of very hot weather, so it’s important to look out for them, help them stay hydrated with plenty of cool drinks, and keep indoor areas as cool as possible.

“Try to keep bedroom and living spaces cool, by closing the curtains on windows that receive the sun and open your windows at cooler times of the day and overnight.

“A trip to a park where there’s lots of shade or a public building that is air conditioned, may help offer some relief from the heat for vulnerable people.”

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