Two photos of the frozen River Wear 1981/82 and 1895.

Two amazing photos of the frozen River Wear in Durham. The first, credited to Matthew Avery and Helen Avery is of the Cathedral across the frozen river. Although Helen originally thought it was from 1983, it’s almost certainly from a year earlier in the winter of 1981/82. December 1981 and the first half of January 1982 were very severe, particularly 8th-27th December 1981 and 6th-16th January 1982, so this picture was most likely taken in one of these periods (probably December 1981). The blue tint on the photograph makes it look very cold indeed. Here’s a comment from James Clark … [Read more]

Wild Weather with Richard Hammond

While I was poking about on YouTube looking for Jack Scott videos, I rediscovered this series by Richard Hammond (of Top Gear fame). It’s called ‘Wild Weather’ and is worth a watch. Enjoy! Richard Hammond investigates the crucial role that water plays. Without water there would be almost no weather: no rain, no hail, no snow, no clouds. So Richard goes in pursuit of water in all it’s forms. He tries to weigh a cloud, finds out how rain could crush a car, and gets involved in starting an avalanche. Richard Hammond investigates the crucial role that temperature plays in … [Read more]

What does extreme weather mean for home insurance?

rescuers paddling through flood water after floods in June 2019

Flooding, heatwaves, winter storms – extreme weather is about to start hitting you in the pocket. Lost among the latest barrage of national and international news events is the ongoing nightmare faced by almost 600 households unable to return to their homes in Lincolnshire because of flooding in June 2019. In the last week the River Steeping burst its banks following heavy rains. More than 580 homes in the Wainfleet area were evacuated, with flooding directly affecting around 130 homes and 1,000 people still unable to return. It’s the latest case of extreme weather to hit the UK. Extreme meteorological … [Read more]

The 10 Snowiest Places in the UK

Liam Dutton’s 10 snowiest places in the UK. Where are the 10 snowiest places in the UK? Each winter, there is often much speculation as to how much snow will fall in the UK. The prospect of snow in the forecast generates a lot of talk and excitement about the weather. Social media becomes a frenzy of snow pictures with extensive use of the hashtag #uksnow. Our very own County Durham features in at No. 5 with Ken Cook’s site at Copley, which averages 53 days per year of snow on average. Widdybank Fell up near Cow Green Reservoir is also … [Read more]

Remembering Jack Scott, BBC Weatherman

Today marks the 12th anniversary of the death of John (Jack) Scott. Jack was born in Ferryhill in County Durham on 9th November 1923. I lived in Ferryhill when I first became interested in weather and one of Jack’s relatives Janice lived up our street and was big mates with my sister at school. Jack had a 20 year broadcasting career on TV, working for the BBC, ITV and Channel 4. He first appeared on our screens in 1969 as the BBC’s 20th Weather Forecaster. He stayed with BBC until he retired in 1983. After he drew his Civil Service … [Read more]

October 2020 starts very wet with Storm Alex, then continues moist.

Rainfall October opened very wet. A total of 32.7mm of rain was recorded at Gilesgate on 3rd resulted in a rapid rise in the River Wear, overtopping the banks in places, and reaching 2.76m at 8:15am on the 4th. The river level fell back rapidly and had dropped a metre by mid afternoon. It was the wettest day of 2020 so far and proved to be the wettest day of the month. The wet theme continued after the deluge on the 3rd (declared the wettest day on record country-wide by the Met Office). There were very wet days recorded on … [Read more]