Denise: It was on the national news last night: the warmest, sunniest and driest part of Scotland this year has been the Outer Hebrides. It wouldn’t surprise me if this is picked up by the wider media and it turns out we’ve been the best place to be in the UK all this year! April and May were very sunny and dry, if cold for the time of year, thanks to winds from the north east. June brought a heat-wave with it, and though the rest of the month was less sunny, with more variable wind directions, it was dry and mild. July is proving more changeable, but still very dry. In more than three months we’ve had only two days of anything stronger than light winds and fine drizzle or a passing light shower. Water supplies are very short, especially here in South Uist, with Scottish Water setting up temporary pumping stations to extract water from fresh-water lochs to top up the usual supplies. Despite more recent rain, the ground is still very dry and grazing for the sheep and cattle is scarce. It’s been noticeable how few wild flowers there’s been this year. May and June are reliably sunny and dry, in the Outer Hebrides, and particularly here in the southern isles, but this year is exceptional. As it has on the east coast, and England too – but for the coudiest and wettest June since records began, and an exceptionally cloudy and wet spring and summer generally. Apparently, it’s all to do with the jet stream.