Weather Watch

Winter is coming

The maps above show the UK winter (Dec, Jan, Feb) averages for 1981-2010. The analyses are based on 1 km grid-point data sets which are derived from station data (Source: Met Office)

As we approach the winter season and temperatures start to dip, we take a look at winter weather in the UK – what affects it, seasonal extremes, what an ‘average’ winter looks like and link to some ‘wintry’ articles of interest.

Rare Moonbow Spotted in parts of Scotland theWeather Club Wed, 30/09/2020 - 13:44

When the conditions are right, Scotland, Northern Ireland and parts of Northern England are the best places in the UK to see the Aurora Borealis, an optical phenomenon of the upper atmosphere. This week viewers in parts of Scotland were not only treated to a spectacular display from the Northern Lights, they also had the opportunity to see a rare moonbow.

Winds of Change theWeather Club Wed, 09/09/2020 - 09:35

In many areas of the world, regional conditions give rise to winds that have been identified by the locals as having a special effect or occurring during a particular season. Quite often these winds are given a name by local inhabitants.

Cyclone Harold theWeather Club Tue, 14/04/2020 - 10:56

Extensive damage has been reported in Fiji as Cyclone Harold’s trail of destruction through the Southern Pacific continues.

How Will COVID-19 Affect the Weather Forecast? theWeather Club Thu, 26/03/2020 - 16:30

Aeroplanes provide important information about the current state of the atmosphere, and have done since the beginning of commercial flights. The more precisely the initial conditions of the atmosphere are known, the more accurate the forecast can be. With COVID-19 triggering such sudden and dramatic reduction in the number of flights, there is a chance that the weather forecast could become slightly less accurate over the coming months.

Unusual Arctic Ozone Hole Develops theWeather Club Thu, 19/03/2020 - 08:14

A large area of ozone depletion has taken place over the Arctic. Usually in early spring, as the sun climbs higher in the sky, the temperature in the stratosphere above the Arctic increases and this prevents the chemical reactions that break up ozone. However, this year a large area of ozone has been eroded and this loss has intensified over the past few weeks. 
Ozone is a naturally occurring gas. Over 90% of it is found in the stratosphere, between 10 and 50 kilometres above the Earth, in what’s known as the ozone layer.

Spring 2020: What will the Weather Be? theWeather Club Wed, 04/03/2020 - 13:20


After the wettest February on record in the UK, which helped to drag the whole winter 2019-2020 to the fifth wettest winter on record, it would be nice if spring brought us some brighter and calmer conditions.

The spring forecast, which has recently been issued by the Met Office, indicates that spring 2020 may well be warmer than average, but unfortunately there is also the chance that it will be wetter than the average, particularly in the north. 

Atmospheric Rivers and Flooding theWeather Club Wed, 26/02/2020 - 15:17

An immediate evacuation is taking place in Ironbridge, Shropshire today, as concerns rise that the temporary barriers of the River Severn are buckling under the force of the water. This comes after an incredibly wet month, with double the month’s average rainfall being recorded in parts of West Yorkshire in the first half of the month and Hereford, Worcestershire and the West Midlands reporting more than 170% of their average monthly rainfall. 

Squall Lines and Storm Ciara theWeather Club Wed, 12/02/2020 - 14:03

Even three days after Storm Ciara hit the UK, some people are still feeling the effects of the weather. Two people lost their lives in the storm, tens of thousands of homes lost power and despite new multi-million pound defences, flood water inundated several Yorkshire towns. 

Saharan Dust and Heart Failure theWeather Club Wed, 05/02/2020 - 13:24

A new study published in 2020 in the Journal of Clinical Medicine, has highlighted just how serious dust storms can be for those living within the Earth’s dust belt. 
The majority of the Earth’s dust originates in the desert zones of North Africa, the Middle East and China, with the Sahara desert producing about half of the global annual mineral dust.