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A video of the UK's largest tulip field, near King's Lynn

This breathtaking video of the largest field of tulips in the UK was captured by Mark Everitt early Thursday morning using a helicam. Such an impressive spectacle is more typical of Holland than Norfolk but this field of 9 million bulbs is found just outside King's Lynn.

This field is not alone. In total, there are 126 acres of tulips with more than 37 million bulbs and 37 different varieties.

According to weather lore, tulips open their blossoms when the temperature rises; they close again when the temperature falls.

This year, because of the warm spring weather, the tulips are a few weeks early. In fact, they have now reached their perfect state of blossom and all their heads will be cut off during the next few days. People can then buy these bulbs and grow their own fields of tulips.

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Picture: Iconic Norwich Cathedral barely visible through smog

Norwich Cathedral was smothered by smog today.
Norwich Cathedral was smothered by smog today. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Record levels of pollution have continued to affect the region.

This morning the Met Office issued an air quality warning, and today the East has suffered some of the worst conditions in the country.

A combination of factors, including dust from the Sahara desert and emissions blown in from Europe is being blamed.

Read more: Advice for asthma sufferers

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Smog-covered Norwich's pollution level hits 'high'

Norwich was among the cities covered in smog this morning as health experts warn those with heart and lung conditions, including asthma, to avoid strenuous activity outdoors.

The scene in Norwich this morning as pollution levels remain high.
The scene in Norwich this morning as pollution levels remain high. Credit: ITV News

People suffering symptoms of pollution - including sore eyes, coughs and sore throats - should also cut down the amount they do outside, experts said.

High pollution levels: Are you at risk?

Updated forecast predicts higher pollution levels

The latest pollution forecast: Purple areas indicate very high pollution risk Credit: Defra / Met Office

The latest air quality forecast from the Met Office is predicting that very high pollution levels will continue through Thursday in the Anglia region.

It had been forecast that pollution levels would drop but that prediction has now been reversed and it is expected pollution will be worse.

Pollution levels have already reached level 9 (high) in the South East, Greater London and Eastern England, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has reported on its website.

Defra ranks air pollution from one to 10, with one being the lowest and 10 the highest.

Read more: Health advice for people with asthma

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Behind the scenes at an air quality monitoring station

Air quality monitoring stations across the UK measure particles of dust in the air that can be breathed into the lungs.

ITV News Correspondent Rupert Evelyn visited a monitoring station in King's Lynn in Norfolk:

Health manager Dave Robson of King's Lynn and West Norfolk Council told ITV News the levels at the local station were "above what we'd normally see".

High pollution levels hit parts of the UK: Are you at risk?

How sand from the Sahara landed in Britain

Saharan sand and dust blown over from Africa has added to Britain's pollution problems this week. It has been captured in a Met Office satellite sequence.

The Met Office says Saharan dust is lifted by strong winds and can reach very high altitudes; from there it can be transported worldwide by winds, covering distances of thousands of miles. The dust gets caught in rain droplets in clouds, falling to the ground in rain.

Paul Hutcheon from the Met Office said “We usually see this happen several times a year when big dust storms in the Sahara coincide with southerly winds to bring that dust here. More dust rain is possible during showers expected this week.”

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