June 2022 weather at Durham – Warm and mainly dry

Temperature June was a very pleasant month, and very similar in nature to June 2021. The mean temperature was 15.4 degC, which is well above the 1991-2020 mean for June of 13.6. Sixteen days reached the 20 degC mark (last year had 21) and it got to 25 degC on 3 of them. The warmest day was the day after the solstice (22nd), when 26.9 degC was recorded. Rainfall There were only 8 rainy days in June 2022, and the month was dominated by a 15 day dry spell ending on the 23rd. Those eight days still managed to accrue …

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New Book – Durham Weather and Climate Since 1841

Description Product Description The British have always been obsessed by the weather. Astronomers at Durham Observatory began weather observations in 1841; weather records continue unbroken to this day, one of the longest continuous series of single-site weather records in Europe. Durham Weather and Climate since 1841 represents the first full publication of this newly digitised record of English weather, which will be of lasting appeal to interested readers and climate researchers alike. The book celebrates 180 years of weather in north-east England by describing how the records were (and are) made and the people who made them, examines monthly and seasonal …

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March 2022 Weather Summary – Continuing Mild and Dry

Temperature Once again, the temperature finishes above average. March 2022 came in at 7.3 degC, which is +1.1 degC up on the 1991-2020 average of 6.2 degC. Like February, there was a single air frost, under the influence of high pressure, on March 7th.  The minimum of -2.2 was unremarkable for March in Durham. The 20 degC mark was breached on March 25th. This got quite close to the warmest temperature ever recorded in March at Durham (21.8, 28/3/2012). The earliest date that 20 degC was reached in Durham remains 8th March 1929. The high was 20.4 degC The mean …

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Feb 2022 Weather Summary for Durham – Mainly Mild, Few Frosts

Temperaature In continuation from January, February 2022 was mainly mild. The mean temperature was 6.0 degC, which is 1.4 degC above the 1991-2020 climatic mean.  The month was still well behind the mildest ever February in Durham though, this being in 1998 (7.6). There was only one recorded air frost, on February 11th, when the thermometer dropped to -1.7 degC. This is unusual for February. The highest temperature was early in the month, 11.7 degC being recorded on the 2nd. This was nowhere near the record for February, which stands at 17.4 degC, recorded on 28th February 2012. The temperature topped …

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Mammatus Cloud in Durham on 6th February 2022

Mammatus Cloud in Durham

The following was observed just after the passage of a very potent shower on 6th February 2022. The ‘cows udder’ appearance of Mammatus Cloud is due to intense updraughts in the base of the cloud, effectively throwing precipitation back upwards, against gravity. They can be intensely turbulent, and aircraft are best advised to avoid them if they are on a flight path. The cold front that passed through Durham actually resulted in a sleet shower and snow was observed on the high ground in the County further south and west. Not really unusual for February, but we had so  little …

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January 2022 in Durham – Mild, mainly dry and very sunny

Storm damage from Storm Malik

The new climate means for 1991-2020 have just been published and that is what I will be comparing to going forward. January 2022 was a mild and very dry month in Durham. Temperature wise, the mean temperature came in at 4.7 degC, which is about 0.6 degC above the new normal for January. As can be seen by the graph, the mean slowly increased as the month wore on. The highest temperature of the month was on New Years Day 2022, which became the mildest 1st January ever recorded in most places, significantly beating the old mark. In fact Nationally, …

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Tonga volcanic eruption detected in Durham!

Tongan volcanic eruption shockwave in Durham Weather data

On 15th January a sub-marine volcano, Hunga Tonga–Hunga Haʻapai, just off the coast of Tonga, exploded with incredible force. The blast wave was visible from space and caused tsunami waves all around the perimeter of the Pacific Ocean. The eruption was some 10,000 miles away from the UK, on the other side of the World. For those that don’t know, Tonga is close to New Zealand, so a long way away. On the morning of the 16th, reports started coming in on Twitter from different parts of the globe, showing disturbances in atmospheric pressure. I looked on my weather station …

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New 1991-2020 Climate Means for Durham

Met Office UK Climate Averages Header

The latest 30 years means have been published by the Met Office. The period covers the 30 years between 1991-2020 and will be used going forward as a representative of climate norms. The figures show a warming of about 0.3 degC overall, particularly in late winter/spring, with a slight increase in sunshine, but also wetter, particularly the 2nd half of the year. Durham’s new figures are below (previous 1981-2010 figures in parentheses) January Mean Max: 6.9 degC (6.6) Mean Min: 1.3 degC (0.9) Mean: 4.1 degC (3.8) Air Frosts: 10.3 days (11.3) Sunshine: 60.9 hrs (58.6) Rainfall: 51.8 mm (52.3) …

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December 2021 Weather in Durham – Dull and Boring

December 2021 turned into a very dull and boring month after all the activity at the end of November because of Storm Arwen. When I say dull, I mean that there really were long periods when the sun just didn’t shine for us. Seemingly endless periods of damp, clammy cloudy weather. This was especially the case around mid-month, when anticyclonic gloom was a feature. The lack of sunshine was evident in daily maxima, which stayed suppressed below 8 degC for most of the month, noteably 2nd-10th and 17th-28th. The synoptics before Christmas were shaping up to give us a snowy …

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