And students at Cambridge University made the most of the sunshine as they dressed up, stripped off and played drinking games.
Met Office forecaster Gregg Dewhurst told JOE.co.uk: "We're looking at highs of 28C, possibly even 29C".
South-west England, Scotland and Northern Ireland will range from 19C to 22C - again, well above average for the time of the year.
At 10.53am, the Met Office Tweeted: "BREAKING NEWS we've just smashed the temperature record for the warmest early May Bank Holiday Monday, with 24.2 °C at Herstmonceux".
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The soar in temperatures would make it the hottest early May Bank Holiday Monday in 40 years - since the extended weekend was introduced in 1978.
The weather in the county is expected to cool down further later this week, with highs of 14C (57.2F) and lows of 5C (41F) on Friday.
"This holiday was only introduced in 1978, some 40 years ago, but the record has stood for nearly 20 years when we saw 23.2C (73F) in 1999".
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In other parts of England yesterday, temperatures were expected to soar to 28C (82.4F).
We are set to see cooler temperatures on Tuesday, with the weather picture becoming more mixed as the month progresses.
Andy Page, Chief Meteorologist at the Met Office said: "The sunshine and heat won't last much longer, with the high pressure area that has brought the fine conditions gradually giving way to fresher winds and showers from the Atlantic over the next couple of days".
He said temperatures will generally be above normal, but this will depend on whether it is a sunny day or a sunny wetter day.
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"But I think we can expect things to be not as warm as they are now, but also not as dry as they are now", he said.