UK Weather - Winter 2023/24

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Simon Culling
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Re: UK Weather - Winter 2023/24

Unread post by Simon Culling »

Sunday 28th January 2024 was a remarkable day in the UK, meteorologically speaking, as the monthly record maximum temperature record for January was broken by at least 1.3°C. The Met Office did predict that a local fohn wind would give a mild day to those areas prone to this effect with a southerly flow - parts of North Wales + Northern Scotland, but even they must have been a bit surprised by how warm it got. On the 12Z synoptic chart (see below) you can see the long draw of southerly winds from south of the Azores and also the tightness of the isobars - winds were gusting to 70mph+ in NW Scotland today. The fohn effect was most enhanced in NW Scotland with north facing leeward slopes seeing some sunshine and the highest temperatures.

The highest so far reported is 19.6°C at a place called Kinlochewe in Wester Ross which is in NW Scotland. A few climate sites in the area will not report until tomorrow morning, so this is just a provisional figure.

For the record, the current UK January high temperature is 18.3°C which was recorded at Aber (Gwynedd) on 10/1/1971, at both Aboyne and Inchmarlo (both Aberdeenshire) on 26/1/2003 and also at Aber on 27/1/1958.

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Simon Culling
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Re: UK Weather - Winter 2023/24

Unread post by Simon Culling »

Yet another deep low pressure system passed to the north of Scotland during the last day of January and it deepened rapidly during this time to around about 940mb by midnight - it was then centred close to the mid Norwegian coast. It gave strong winds to the north of Scotland with gusts up to around 80mph, but we did not notice it down here in the south. Wednesday 31st January was cloudy day here in Tiverton with some rain later in the evening and with the temperature reaching 12°C and not falling much in the evening.

This particular storm was given the name Ingunn by the Danish Meteorological Institute and produced some very strong winds for the Faroe Islands and then later for the mid-Western coast of Norway. In the Faroe Islands (to the NW of Scotland and on the way to Iceland) there was a gust to 97mph at the airport, but an incredible 155mph gust was reported from a roadside weather station on one of the smaller islands Heltnin. Later in the day, quite a few synoptic sites in the affected area of Norway had gusts exceeding 100mph and the highest I can find is for 116mph at Sklinna Fyr - it is a lighthouse on a small island just off the coast near to Terrak in the Nordland County. Thankfully this is not a densely populated region as this storm was of an order of magnitude stronger than anything that has hit the UK this winter.

It does look like the jet stream will weaken for a while now and we will go back to rather benign + boring weather here in the UK and increasingly mild.

An update on the very warm day last Sunday. A climate site that reports daily, Achfary (in the NW Highlands), has taken the record with a high of 19.9°C and this beats the old January UK record maximum by 1.6°C.
Simon Culling
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Re: UK Weather - Winter 2023/24

Unread post by Simon Culling »

After a few days of quieter weather, we are back to the very unsettled stuff again - and it has turned much colder in the northern half of the UK. This morning the temperature fell to -13.8°C at Altnaharra in the far north of Scotland under a blanket of fresh powdery snow and a band of heavy rain has now turned to snow over northern England today (Thurs 8th Feb). However, down here in the SW it is miserable and dull and 13°C. The unsettled weather looks set to continue into the weekend with the cold air holding on in the north.

January 2024 was a sunny month apparently, although I do not remember it that way. Temperatures and rainfall over the UK were very close to average. See Met Office summary for further details:

https://blog.metoffice.gov.uk/2024/02/0 ... s-weather/

EDIT: The final CET for January was 4.7°C (+0.9°C) and the final EWR was 97mm, which is 103% of the monthly average.
Last edited by Simon Culling on Tue 13/02/2024 01:57, edited 2 times in total.
Simon Culling
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Re: UK Weather - Winter 2023/24

Unread post by Simon Culling »

As per the Met Office forecast, disruptive snow was confined the the high ground on Thursday and has since melted as milder air has moved north behind the warm front. The Met Office gave very specific warnings a day or so in advance and they proved to be very accurate.

The mild and somewhat unsettled weather has continued through the weekend with the usual absence of sunshine, although today (Mon 12th Feb) is glorious here in Tiverton with just a few small cumulus and plenty of bright sunshine - that lovely yellow globe is slowly getting higher in the sky. The forecast for the rest of the week is for the mild theme to dominate with rain/showers at times - in other words more of what now passes for winter here in the UK.

The CET for February was 7.9°C (+4.1°C) up to the 10th and the EWR was 57mm also up to the 10th, which is 79% of the monthly average of 72mm. The temperature value currently matches the record high for the month of February - set way back in 1779 - but I think it will struggle to equal or exceed this for the whole month.
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Re: UK Weather - Winter 2023/24

Unread post by Simon Culling »

It has remained very mild here in the UK with some springlike temperatures in eastern + southern parts of England. However, here in the SW it has been o/cast + gloomy with drizzle or periods of rain on most days - typical winter clagg. 25-30mm of rain fell over much of England + Wales during the weekend, but this has now moved away to the east + the mild run of south westerlies continues. These are a selection of the recent UK maximum temperatures:

Wednesday 14th February - 16.6°C at Hereford Credenhill
Thursday 15th February - 18.1°C at Pershore College (Worcs) +Teddington (Greater London) - just 0.1°C shy of the date record
Sunday 18th February - 16.8°C at Gosport Fleetlands (Hampshire)

The mild theme will continue for a few more days, but a broad trough looks like developing over the UK by later in the week as the jet stream buckles and low pressure takes up residence to the E/NE of the UK - and this will bring cooler + showery weather.

The CET for February was 8.4°C (+4.6°C) up to the 17th and the EWR was 78mm up to the 16th, which is 107% of the monthly average.
Simon Culling
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Re: UK Weather - Winter 2023/24

Unread post by Simon Culling »

Without wanting to sound like a stuck record - and you will probably need to be over 50 to know what that metaphor means - the mild and very wet weather has continued unabated over the UK. This is turning into a very wet and mild winter which is the complete opposite of many of the long term forecasts issued before it started. Bands of wind and rain have continued to cross the UK, although the intensity has now dropped for a few days - we had a mostly sunny day on Monday here in Tiverton and a slight frost this morning - Tuesday 27th Feb.

Not much change in the forecast, although rainfall totals from the approaching systems do look to be quite a bit lower than recently. Also looks like it will turn a little colder as we go into March (and Spring). If the constantly predicted SSW does actually finally occur this week, we might see a miserable and cold first half of Spring. Yippee.

The CET for February was 8.1°C (+4.3°C) up to the 25th and the EWR was 135mm also up to the 25th, which is 187% of the monthly average. It looks like the overall CET will be very close to the February record.
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