April 2000 - Wintry Weather

A combination of a slow moving front and north-easterly winds brought wintry weather to much of England and Wales during 2 to 4 April 2000.

Introduction

Wintry Weather

A combination of a slow moving front and north-easterly winds brought wintry weather to much of England and Wales during 2 to 4 April 2000 - see the weather radar image for midday on the 3rd.

Weather radar image for midday on the 3rd.

radar1200Z03-04-2000

Several stations recorded in excess of their 1961-90 average rainfall total for April in just two days (0900 2nd to 0900 4th). The most noteworthy totals were:

Station National Grid Altitude [m] 2-day total
[mm]
Percent
of April normal [%]
Return period
[years]
Easting Northing
Wittering 5043 3026 73 54.9 113 6.3
Bracknell 4846 1664 74 52.0 106 5.1
Bridlington 5194 4680 15 46.7 100 3.1

PrecipBrac2and3apr2000

Click here to see a contoured map of the two-day rainfall totals and here for a contoured map of the two-day rainfall as a percentage of the 1961-90 average for April.

Snow fell across much of central England although, except in some upland areas (notably the Pennines), it did not settle for long. At Lyneham in Wiltshire snow was reported for 18 consecutive hours. Although not a common event for April, similar snowy conditions have occurred at Lyneham as recently as 1998. The graph below shows that during the afternoon of the 2nd the temperature reached a pleasant 11 °C but that at around the same time the following day the temperature was barely above freezing.

PrecipLyne2to4apr2000

In Northern Ireland, cold, dry air resulted in widespread frosts. On Wednesday/Thursday (5/6 April) air temperatures fell to as low as -4 °C in the central lowlands of North Armagh. At the Met. Office climate site at Ballywatticock, near Newtownards, County Down, the minimum air temperature measured -3.1 °C, making it the lowest April temperature to be recorded at the site since records commenced in 1976. It was also the lowest temperature to be recorded at the site this year and the second lowest of the winter/spring season.

The record lowest air temperature for April in Northern Ireland of -8.2 °C remains unchallenged, however.

Last updated: 26 October 2012