The averaging period used for the following assessment was 1961-1990.
Mean temperatures generally just above average across the UK. Rainfall was below average across England & Wales, with eight out of the last 10 months now having experienced below average for England & Wales. However, there was above average rainfall across East Anglia and in particular across many western and northern areas of Scotland.
Gust of 78 m.p.h. was recorded at Lerwick on the 29th, as a deep depression moved east to the north of Scotland. Central London recorded a temperature of 32.2 °C on 31st.
England and Wales diary of highlights
Showers at first, then fine and warm for a couple of days. Unsettled second and third weeks, then unsettled for much of the rest of the month. Hot in the closing days.
1st to 6th: There were showers in many parts on 1st but especially in the south. Manston (Kent) had 24 mm between 0500 and 0700 UTC and there were reports of funnel clouds at Shoreham Airport (West Sussex). Some rain spread from the north-west on the 2nd clearing the south-east early on the 3rd. There were showers on the 3rd and rain in western and central parts later. This cleared Kent early in the afternoon of the 4th. There was a spell of more persistent rain and drizzle in on the 5th. South-western areas had some rain on the 6th and there were a few showers in the east.
7th to 9th: This period was dominated by high pressure with warmer temperatures despite some chilly nights. Shap Fell (Cumbria) recorded 1.4 °C on the morning of the 7th. Western and southern parts had the best of the sunshine with 10 to 12 hours of sunshine per day typically. There were a few showers in the east on the 8th. A band of rain edged into northern England through the afternoon of the 9th.
10th to 14th: This was an unsettled period of weather with showers or longer spells of rain at times. The 10th brought some showers and thunder to eastern counties. Another band of rain moved into northern England on the 11th and became heavy and thundery especially over hills. Warcop Range (Cumbria) recorded 53.4 mm in five hours up to 2100 UTC, with 24.8 mm in one hour. Northolt (Greater London) recorded 27.1 °C on the 11th. The south coast and south Wales had sunny periods on the 12th, but there was a persistent band of rain from the Pennines to East Anglia for much of the day, only weakening in the evening. Fylingdales (North Yorkshire) had a maximum of just 14.5 °C. There were a few showers on the 14th in central and eastern parts, where there was a fresh to strong northerly wind.
15th to 17th: Pressure was relatively high through this period giving fine weather and temperatures started to rise. Charlwood (Surrey) recorded 27.6 °C on the 17th. There were some overnight fog patches.
18th to 23rd: A cold front moved east on the 18th and 19th. There was some heavy thundery rain overnight and into the 19th through from Hampshire to north-east England and this only edged slowly east. Sutton Bonnington (Nottinghamshire) had 32.2 mm in the 24 hours to 1800 UTC. Many parts were fine on the 20th but heavy rain spread to Wales and the West Country in the evening of the 21st and this extended east the following day. Saunton Sands (Devon) had 29 mm 2100-0900 UTC on the 21st.
24th to 27th: An unseasonably deep low pressure centre passed to the north of the UK on the 24th and this brought heavy rain and strong winds to all parts at some stage during the day. A gust of 56 knots was reported at Valley. At Shap Fell (Cumbria) 49.4 mm of rain was recorded. Over the next few days there were showery westerly winds. On 25th there were widespread showers and thunderstorms and 20 mm diameter hail was recorded in Crowthorne and 15 mm diameter in Reading, both in Berkshire.
28th to 31st: The 28th was a breezy day. Northern parts were cloudy but the south had a sunny day. A cold front stalled over the Midlands and southern Wales on the 29th but the south stayed sunny. South to south-east winds on the 30th and 31st brought high temperatures and it was very hot on the 31st over central, south-east and eastern England. In Central London a maximum temperature of 32.2 °C was recorded, the highest temperature for the month.
Scotland diary of highlights
Mixture of cyclonic and anticyclonic westerlies.
A strong ridge of high pressure gave a fine day on the 1st but low pressure moving from Iceland to the Norwegian Sea soon introduced westerly winds with sunshine and showers from the 2nd to the 5th.
High pressure developed close to the British Isles from the 6th to the 8th and it became sunny. Nights were cool with the temperature falling to 2 °C at Saughall in Ayrshire on the 7th but days were warm with 25 °C recorded at Strathallan on the 8th.
The high pressure slowly retreated to the south-west between the 9th and 13th and the weather became more cloudy with light rain in places. Warm and humid air reached the country on the 9th and 10th and the temperature at Strathallan reached 26 °C. Later it became cooler as the pressure continued to fall and air was drawn in from the north-west.
Between the 14th and the 18th high pressure moved from the south of Ireland to Denmark and the warm and humid air returned to Scotland. On the 17th many stations recorded minimum temperatures of 16 °C. Overnight a cold front brought heavy rain to the north-west with 36 mm of rain recorded at Port Ellen on Islay. The rain moved across the whole of Scotland the next day.
An anticyclone near the Azores extended a ridge of high pressure towards Scotland on the 19th and 20th giving fine weather. A front pushed a band of cloud and rain across the country on the evening of the 20th but the ridge of high pressure re-built on the 21st to give another fine day.
On the 23rd a deep depression moved east to the north of Scotland and brought rain and gales across the country during the night. Eskdalemuir recorded 38 mm of rain and gusts reached 68 m.p.h. at South Uist. Westerly winds then brought sunny periods and showers until another deep depression passed to the north of Scotland on the 28th. This brought more rain and strong winds, with a gust of 78 m.p.h. at Lerwick early the next morning.
After more bright westerly weather on the 29th and 30th, warm and humid air returned on the 31st with the temperature up to 25 °C at Charterhall. A cold front brought heavy rain to the north-west with 42 mm at Aviemore and 38 mm at Baltasound.
Northern Ireland diary of highlights
Generally warm and dry with near normal sunshine.
1st to 6th: Generally dry with near normal temperatures and with decent amounts of sunshine. The 4th was a cloudier and cooler day with more persistent showers in the afternoon, especially across southern areas.
7th to 10th: Dry, warm and quite sunny, although the 9th was rather cloudy but bright. Temperatures up to 24 °C on the 8th and 10th.
11th to 22nd: Continuing dry and fairly warm, although with some spells of heavier rain overnight on the 11th/12th and on the 17th. Generally rather dull through this period, although the 20th and 22nd were quite sunny days.
23rd to 26th: Cool and showery but with decent spells of sunshine on both 24th and 25th.
27th to 31st: Warm and quite humid, especially on the 30th, when widespread thunderstorms broke out in the afternoon.
Last updated: Feb 27, 2013 10:44 AM