Friday, August 1, 2014

UK summer on track to become one of hottest in a century

Peter Walker in the Guardian (UK): There may be showers and slightly cooler weather due across much of the UK this weekend, but even that should not dampen the hopes of those wondering if the recent warm weather makes this summer one of the hottest on record.

Official figures show summer 2014 is unlikely to reach anywhere close to the exceptionally warm conditions of 1976, 2003 or 2006. Nevertheless, the data shows this year is already ranking amongst the warmest summers of the last century while the past month ranks as the eighth warmest July in Britain's national records, equal with 1933.

According to Met Office data in both June and July the mean UK temperature was 1.3C (2.34F) above average. This placed July as the joint eighth-warmest since equivalent records were first collected in 1910, with a day-and-night UK average of 16.3C (61F).

There were 228 hours of sunshine, 133% of the usual average for the month, making the Commonwealth Games summer the 10th sunniest on record, albeit some way from the 256 hours seen in 1955. It was the sixth sunniest July in records from 1929, while the sunniest day was in Glasgow on 9th.

However decent the overall picture, said Mark Wilson of the Met Office, the summer arguably felt all the better for coming after a series of significantly damper ones, notably 2012, the wettest for a century....

An aerial view of the Royal Crescent in Bath, shot by Arpingstone, public domain

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