The end of the July heatwave – Phew!

It’s July 24th and today is the first day i’ve felt remotely comfortable in my own house for weeks. The heat has been slowly building this month, with incredibly stuffy nights keeping me awake and making me feel progressively tired. Normally our living room is a cool haven, facing North and receiving no direct sunshine, but even this hasn’t been a comfortable place. The first 23 days of July averaged 17.7 degC. That isn’t record breaking, but it’s very warm for Durham. The spell of 16th-23rd has been the hottest, averaging 20.3 degC. This has been the spell that’s caused …

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Tornado (Funnel Cloud) over Darlington 10th July 2021

Funnel Cloud over Darlington 10th July 2021

There was a lot of hot but turbulent weather early in July which spawned some thunderstorms and funnel clouds in places. This shot was taken over Darlington on 10th July. Technically this was not a tornado, as it didn’t touch down on the ground, but it was spectacular and probably quite scary for those under it! We would encourage anyone who sees a funnel cloud (especially if it touches the ground to become a tornado) to report it to Torro.  

The last 5 July’s in the UK according to Trevor Harley

July 2016 Slightly warmer than average overall. Unsettled first half, then with a fine spell, and a hot spell from the 18th to 29th, before turning thundery, the month finishing unsettled. Rainfall was about average overall (104%) bit better in the NW and drier in the SE, and very dry in the south. It was quite a dull month, with 92% of average sunshine. The highest temperature of the month was 33.5C at Brize Norton (Oxon), and 33.9C at Jersey Airport on the 19th. 97.9 mm of rain fell at Nunraw Abbey (East Lotion) on the 20th. July 2017 An …

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June 2021 Weather Summary – Very Long Dry Spell

June 2021 posted a welcome recovery for the early summer period after the seemingly long cold Spring. The temperature passed the 20 degC mark on 21 days in the and the real notable thing was the great dryness. There was no measurable rain at Durham from 25th May until 17th June, a spell of 23 consecutive days and even then it was just a trace 0.1mm. The total for the entire month was 26.9mm, but it almost all fell in the last 6 days, and more than half of it on 25th June, when 14.6mm wet us thoroughly. The average …

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The last 5 Junes in the UK according to Trevor Harley

2016 Wet, dull, and quite warm. The first half was more settled and relatively warm. The night of the 22-23 June saw severe thunderstorms with flooding in the SE, particularly in the London area. Farnborough recorded 45.0 mm overnight. The end of the month was cool and unsettled. The average temperature was brought up by some mild nights; the highest temperature of the month was only 27.8C, Porthmadog. Rainfall overall was 144% (95 mm), with a lot of it occurring towards the end of the month. It was particularly wet in the east. There was only 74% of sunshine (137 …

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August 2020 Monthly Weather Report : Good start, poor end

Durham Weather : August 2020 The weather in Durham in August 2020 was disappointing overall after starting out really well. It was typical of the summer really. There were no long settled spells as such at Durham, although some very warm weather was experienced in the south of the country, culminating with 36.4C recorded at Heathrow and Kew Gardens. The 11th August (mean 24.0 degC) and 12th August (mean 25.1 degC) were the warmest recorded for those particular dates on the Central England Temperature series. Thunderstorms were extensive across the country after that, but we escaped most of them in …

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An August Deluge – Nearly 1/2” of rain in 10 minutes!

View of durham cathedral and castle in heavy rain

23rd August 2020. Very heavy rain in Durham Above is the scene from the Bandstand by the River Wear in Durham on Sunday 23rd August 2020. The heavy deluge dropped 9mm of rain in 10 minutes on Durham and it’s surroundings. That’s a rate of 54mm per hour, which is a proper dowpour. In the town, the narrow streets were rapidly turned into rivers and driving visibility was virtually nil. Thanks to Kev Allison for the photo via Facebook.  

July 2020 – Disappointingly dull with no real summer weather

July 2020 – Disappointingly dull with no real summer weather July 2020 can best be described as ‘disappointing’. The hottest part of the year never really got going in Durham. It took until the 12th July for the 20 degC mark to be breached for the first time. When it did, it stayed in the lower 20’s. The only day it crossed the 25 degC threshold was on the last day which was phenomenally hot. At 31.0 degC, the last day made it into the history books as the 3rd warmest day on record Nationally. The temperature rose to 37.8 …

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June 2020 – First half cool, Second half very warm

Temperature Overall, June was warmer than average, but there was a very cool wet spell in the first half of the month. The mean max was +1.1 degC above normal and the mean min +2.0 degC above. Between the 3rd and 12th, the maximum temperature was only 16.1 degC (9th) and fell to as low as 5.5 degC on the morning that same day. A very cold day for June. It was also wet (see below). Temperatures recovered strongly after the 14th, peaking on the 24th at 29.7 degC. In some areas of the country it was the warmest for …

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What is a heatwave and How is it defined?

You’ll see much talk in the papers over the coming summer months of heatwaves. The daily rags describe any thing remotely warm as a ‘heatwave’, but is there a strict definition of a heatwave? This Met Office video sheds some light on it. “A heatwave is an extended period of hot weather relative to the expected conditions of the area at that time of year, which may be accompanied by high humidity, but what is the definition for a UK heatwave?”