The good weather has prompted lifeguard cover to be extended at Co Clare beaches, in a local authority move likely to be repeated elsewhere in the country as temperatures continue to rise.

Today is expected to be the hottest day of the year, with temperatures in Dublin set to reach 29C, the highest in the country. Temperatures in other parts of Leinster are also expected to reach 26C to 28C. For the first time during June, Clare County Council has extended lifeguard cover at the county’s four main beaches beyond the weekend.

The local authority has confirmed that lifeguard cover is being provided at Kilkee, Lahinch, Spanish Point and Fanore today from 3.30pm to 7.30pm to cater for a large increase in the number of people visiting beaches in the late afternoon and evening during the current fine spell.

Clare McGrath, water safety development officer with Clare County Council, is asking people to swim only in lifeguarded areas denoted by the lifeguard flags.

“I would urge members of the public to observe notices on any beach or where they want to swim, and to observe the lifeguard’s rules and regulations regarding off- limit swimming locations,” she said.

According to Met Éireann’s five-day weather forecast, there will be some showers early today with a slight risk of thunder but the late afternoon will see a good deal of dry weather with spells of sunshine. There will be top temperatures of 22C to 26C generally but these will reach 29C in parts of Leinster.

However, a cold front is forecast to move across the country tonight, bringing some sharp downpours of rain, possibly with thunder, in places. While most of the country will remain dry, it will turn noticeably cooler tomorrow, with outbreaks of rain spreading into Munster and western counties. On Friday, average temperatures will range from 15C to 20C throughout the country, with some sunny spells and well-scattered showers.

Facing into the weekend, Saturday will be a bright and breezy day, with a mix of cloud and sunny spells. Highest temperatures on Saturday are predicted to be 14C to 18C.

There is some uncertainty regarding weather conditions on Sunday, according to Met Éireann, but it looks set to begin dry with some sunshine.

However, there is potential for a spell of rain to spread northwards across the country later in the day. Maximum temperatures reaching the mid to high teens.

Met Éireann has warned that the dry and warm weather will cause be a large increase in grass and weed pollen in the air, meaning hayfever sufferers may see their symptoms flare up this week.


Lifestyle

Sometimes I think we impose Christmas on our kids. A couple of weeks back, my wife and I were all about The Late Late Toy Show and going to see Jack and The Beanstalk in the Everyman Theatre.Learner Dad: I think we impose Christmas on our kids

For our food special, our Currabinny duo, James Kavanagh and William Murray, dish up their top festive side plates.The Currabinny Cooks: Festive side plates to dish up this Christmas

More From The Irish Examiner