Will Christmas Day in Norfolk be the warmest ever..?

Forget wishing for a white Christmas in Norfolk this year - you might have to dig out a pair of shorts and sandals instead.

Temperatures on Christmas day are set to reach 10C in some parts of the county - making it one of the mildest Norfolk Christmases on record.

But Chris Bell, forecaster at Norwich-based Weatherquest, said it won't challenge the record of 15.6C set in 1896 at Leith near Edinburgh.

He said: 'The temperature in Norfolk during the day will be 10C, which is 3C higher than the average for this time of year.

'It's going to be a windy day with plenty of cloud but it will stay dry. The overnight low for Christmas Day is usually around freezing but this year it could be around 4C.'

Following a cold start to the month, temperatures in the county reached 11C today and are set to remain mild until after Boxing Day.

Mr Bell continued: 'Last year we had just come out of the cold spell which started at the end of November and lasted almost up to Christmas and there was still snow on the ground on Christmas Day.

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'The temperature during the day last year was 1C with the overnight temperature at -3C so it is a massive contrast to what we are expecting this year. Christmas Day in Norfolk in 2009 was also below average at 2.5C.'

He added the reason for this year's mild Christmas Day is a large area of high pressure from the mid-Atlantic.

Elsewhere, temperatures could reach as high as 14C in other parts of the UK on Christmas Day but the mildness will be accompanied by rain.

The highest temperatures are likely to be recorded in Scotland but Scots and people living in Northern Ireland will also have to contend with windy conditions, with gusts of up to 60mph.

'This is likely to be one of the warmer Christmases,' said Rachel Vince, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association.

'It's certainly going to be very mild, although there's going to be quite a lot of rain in places.'

She continued: 'As chances of a white Christmas look slim, the betting world is focusing on whether it would be the UK's hottest Christmas.'

Joe Crilly, a spokesman for William Hill bookmakers, said the odds for a white Christmas have drifted to the longest price in decades.

'A couple of weeks ago it was 15 to eight in parts of the UK but now it's 16 to one in 20 different cities in England,' He said.

'Up until a few weeks ago we have been taking quite a few bets but it is down this year because it looks unlikely to snow.'

He said attention was now on whether it would be the UK's hottest Christmas with odds set at three to one.

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