January to November 2003 dry spell

Rainfall totals January to November

The information below has been taken from the Met Office Hadley Centre precipitation series.

It is interesting to note that the 24-month period starting May 1995 and ending April 1997 for England & Wales had only 1399.4 mm of rainfall (this was the 3rd driest 24-month consecutive total in the series, only just short of 24-month spells around 1783 and 1853). In comparison, the current 24 consecutive month total starting December 2001 and ending November 2003 is 1822.7 mm. Average 1961-90 rainfall for 24 months would give 1830.2 mm.

January to November 2003 rainfall
Area Rainfall (mm) 1961-90 average (mm) Rainfall as % of average Compared to previous Jan-Nov totals
Eastern Scotland 492.1 684.0 72% 2nd driest in series, driest being 1955 with 487.6 mm, series back to 1931.
NE England 536.9 701.4 76% 6th driest in series, driest being 1989 with 497.7 mm, series back to 1873. Driest since 1989.
NW England &
N Wales
705.4 909.9 77% 5th driest in series, driest being 1955 with 614.0 mm, series back to 1873. Driest since 1964, when 691.2 mm was recorded.
Scotland 969.9 1215.6 80% 2nd driest in series, driest being 1955 with 870.8 mm, series back to 1931.
Northern Ireland 740.3 926.1 80% 3rd driest in series, driest being 2001 with 722.8 mm, series back to 1931.
SW England &
S Wales
722.4 905.8 80% 9th driest in series, driest being 1921 with 590.1 mm, series back to 1873. Driest since 1964, when 661.5 mm was recorded.
England and Wales 661.3 819.7 81% 13th driest in series, driest being 1921 with 552.8 mm, series back to 1766. Driest since 1964, when 625.7 mm was recorded.
Southern Scotland 1006.5 1230.8 82% 6th driest in series, driest being 1955 with 858.0 mm, series back to 1931. Driest since 1973, when 973.5 mm was recorded.
SE England 532.7 647.9 82% 13th driest in series, driest being 1921 with 353.4 mm, series back to 1873. Driest since 1973 when 471.7 mm was recorded.
Northern Scotland 1215.4 1434.4 85% 10th driest in series, driest being 1941 with 1014.3 mm, series back to 1931. Driest since 1976 when 1203.5 mm was recorded.
Central England 496.2 583.2 85% 24th driest in series, driest being 1921 with 362.2 mm, series back to 1873.

Station data January to November 2003

Based on data available on 8 December 2003 (top three driest).

January to November 2003 rainfall
Station name Rainfall (mm) 1961-90 average (mm) Rainfall as % of average
Shoeburyness (Essex) 360.8 460.7 78%
Met Office London 372.9 481.2 77%
Hereford Credenhill (Herefordshire) 377.5 589.0 64%

Averages have been estimated where a 30-year record is not available.

January to November 2003 rainfall maps

Actual rainfall map

RainfallJanNov03_Actual

Anomaly (per cent of average) map

RainfallJanNov03_Anomaly

Last updated: 30 October 2012