November 2011

The averaging period used for the following assessment was 1981-2010.

UK Overview

A generally southerly flow in the first three weeks brought many very mild days. There was plenty of cloud at times, and some persistent fog over eastern England, but any rainfall was showery and mainly confined to the west. During the last week a vigorous westerly air stream brought longer spells of rain and strong winds, especially to Scotland and Northern Ireland. Areas towards the south-east remained drier with further mild days. The few frosts that occurred were mainly confined to northern areas.

The mean temperature was 2.5 °C above the 1981-2010 average, resulting in the second warmest November in over 100 years with only November 1994 warmer. The number of air frosts was among the lowest for November in the last 50 years. Rainfall amounts ranged from above normal in western Scotland and Northern Ireland to below normal over north-east Scotland and most of England and Wales and they were well below over areas of eastern England. It was particularly dry across parts of East Anglia, Lincolnshire and Yorkshire. Sunshine amounts varied from well above normal over northern Scotland to somewhat below across much of the Midlands and southern England. It was the sunniest November on record over northern Scotland.

A maximum temperature of 19.2 °C was recorded at Tregarth (Gwynedd) on the 13th. A minimum temperature of −6.1 °C was recorded at Redesdale (Northumberland) early on the 7th. In the 24 hours ending at 0900 on the 18th, 125.6 mm of rainfall was recorded at Alltdearg House, near Sligachan, Isle of Skye. A wind gust of 90 mph was recorded on Fair Isle on the morning of the 27th.

Weather Impacts

The unusually mild autumn weather across the UK resulted in widespread reports of flowering plants and bird, insect and animal activity more typical of warmer seasons.

The relatively dry conditions across parts of the Midlands and eastern England continued to cause concerns about the water situation there next year.

On the 20th and 21st, thousands of air travellers faced disruption as fog caused delays and cancellations to flights using Heathrow and London City airports. Poor visibility also affected road travel in the south-east and other parts of eastern England.

There was a very stormy last week. Severe gales across the Western Isles on the 24th caused travel disruption, with some ferry cancellations and bridge restrictions. Northern parts of the UK were again battered by very strong winds over the weekend of the 26th / 27th. The winds brought difficult travelling conditions with restrictions on many of Scotland's bridges and cancellation of ferry services, while 400 homes on Orkney were affected by a power cut. On the 27th, a cargo ship sank in heavy seas off the North Wales coast with the loss of several crew members. Heavy rain overnight into the 29th caused flooding across much of central, western and southern Scotland with some properties flooded and roads and train services badly hit.

England Diary of Highlights

Airstreams from a southerly quarter brought many very mild, settled days in the first three weeks. There was plenty of cloud at times, and some persistent fog over eastern areas, but any rainfall was showery and mainly confined to the west. Conditions became much more unsettled in the last week, with a cooler westerly flow and strong winds at times. The mean temperature was 2.5 °C above the 1981-2010 average, making it the second warmest November in over 100 years, with only November 1994 warmer. The number of air frosts was among the lowest for November in the last 50 years. Rainfall amounts were generally below normal, with many counties recording about half the normal amount and only around one third in parts of the east. It was one of the driest Novembers on record in Lincolnshire and Norfolk. Sunshine amounts were generally close to or somewhat below normal.

1st to 5th:

The first few days were unsettled with bands of rain and heavy showers crossing most parts. Over 20 mm fell across much of the south-east from 0900 on 3rd to 0900 on 4th, with 56 mm at Alice Holt Lodge (Hampshire). However temperatures remained well above average, with maxima around 17 °C reported widely on 3rd.

6th to 12th:

A change to more settled conditions with high pressure becoming established to the east of the UK. An air frost occurred in northern areas overnight 6th/7th, with the temperature falling to −6.1 °C at Redesdale (Northumberland). Conditions were rather cloudy for most, with dense fog patches developing across many central and eastern areas. Weather fronts tried to push in from the west by 9th, bringing rain to the south-west. Similar conditions on 10th, 11th and 12th with outbreaks of rain remaining mainly in the west and cloud and fog in the east. Despite this, temperatures remained well above average.

13th to 16th:

The settled weather continued, with high pressure over Scandinavia bringing south-easterly winds. A very mild day on 13th with maxima over 16 °C across much of the south and 18.1 °C at Otterbourne (Hampshire). Most parts remained dry with cloudy skies, but sunny spells towards the north-west. Maximum temperatures were lower where cloud and fog patches persisted.

17th to 21st:

A west/east split, with rather cloudy conditions and some patchy rain across the west and cool foggy conditions in the east. Where sunshine did occur, temperatures were once again above average, with 16.2 °C at Gravesend (Kent) on 17th. From 18th to 21st fog patches across central and eastern parts become persistent and dense, with lower daytime temperatures.

22nd to 30th

An unsettled theme for the rest of the month, with several deep areas of low pressure passing north of the UK. Colder air overnight into 23rd, with one of the first widespread ground frosts of the autumn; the temperature fell to −2.3 °C at South Newington (Oxfordshire). Cloud then increased in the north, with heavy rain across Cumbria, but elsewhere remained mainly dry. Rain continued across the north-west into 24th. Elsewhere remained rather cloudy and dry, but windy. Further rain spread across all areas on 25th, clearing the south-east early on 26th. Western areas saw more rain on 26th, but the south-east remained largely dry. Rain quickly cleared south-eastward early on 27th to leave a fine, sunny day. It remained windy but, despite this, temperatures rose to around 14 °C in the south-east on 27th with 14.8 °C at Hastings (East Sussex). A widespread air frost in the south-east early on 28th, with −5.0 °C recorded at Upper Lambourn (Berkshire), before rain spread into the west. The 29th was very unsettled, with a squally band of rain moving eastwards; a gust of 58 mph was recorded at Plymouth (Devon). Temperatures in the morning reached 13 °C widely, with 13.9 °C at Leeming (North Yorkshire), but colder air followed the rain. Heavy showers continued through 30th, especially in the west and near the south coast.

Wales Diary of Highlights

The first three weeks saw plenty of dry mild weather, with just the occasional showery day. It then turned much more unsettled in the last week with rain or showers, and strong winds at times. The mean temperature was 2.3 °C above the 1981-2010 average, making it the second warmest November in over 100 years with only November 1994 warmer. The number of air frosts was among the lowest for November in the last 50 years. Rainfall amounts were generally below normal, especially towards the north-west. Sunshine amounts were somewhat above normal in the north-west, but nearer normal in the east.

1st to 4th:

After a fine day on 1st, the weather became much more unsettled, with occasionally heavy rain arriving from the west late on 2nd. Showers followed on 3rd and 4th, these turning heavy and thundery at times on 4th. Temperatures remained above average.

5th to 10th:

A change to more settled conditions. The 5th and 6th had long sunny spells, once early mist and fog cleared, but the following days were predominantly overcast with occasional drizzle. Temperatures again above average.

11th to 12th:

On 11th a band of rain, often heavy and sometimes thundery, moved eastwards followed by a few showers. The 12th started with showers, but they quickly died away. Dry, fine and bright conditions followed to western areas, whilst low cloud and drizzle affected the east. It continued to be mild or very mild.

13th to 16th:

Settled weather predominated, as high pressure persisted to the east of the UK. Much of Wales remained dry throughout the period, with sunshine on 13th. Thereafter it was often dull and overcast, with hill fog and occasional drizzle, and only limited sunny spells developing. After an exceptionally warm day on 13th, when the temperature reached 19.2 °C at Tregarth (Gwynedd), it remained mild or very mild.

17th to 21st:

Atlantic frontal systems approached from the west. After a brief period of rain late on 17th and into 18th, it was fine and dry until further rain arrived on 21st. This rain was often heavy, sometimes thundery, and cleared away overnight. It was mild or very mild, with a maximum temperature of 15.5 °C at Colwyn Bay (Conwy) on 18th.

22nd to 23rd:

Settled conditions returned, with a ridge of high pressure across much of the UK. This allowed a slight air frost to occur in rural areas around dawn on 23rd, a rare occurrence for this November. Generally it was mild or very mild.

24th to 30th:

On 24th a deep depression moved north-eastwards, to the north-west of the UK. An associated band of rain moved eastwards across Wales on 25th, followed by showers and windy conditions. The wind continued to strengthen through 26th, bringing widespread gales and gusts to almost 70 mph along the coast, and rain persisted across the far north-west. The rain then quickly cleared south-eastwards on 27th, leaving a fine day with the wind easing. After a fairly quiet day on 28th, with just drizzle in the west, 29th had another period of wet and very windy weather. A band of heavy rain moved eastwards, with gusts around 50 to 60 mph; Capel Curig (Conwy) recorded a gust of 81 mph. Heavy showers, some with hail and thunder, followed on 30th. It was also very windy but remained mild.

Scotland Diary of Highlights

The first half of the month saw plenty of dry mild weather, with just the occasional wetter day. It then turned much more unsettled with rain or showers, especially in the last week when winds were very strong at times. The mean temperature was 2.7 °C above the 1981-2010 average, making it the warmest November in over 100 years. The number of air frosts was among the lowest in November in the last 50 years. Rainfall totals varied from above normal in much of the west to well below in the north-east. It was much sunnier than normal across the Western Isles and northern Scotland where it was the sunniest November on record. Amounts elsewhere were closer to average.

1st to 10th:

A dry and bright day for most on 1st and 2nd although the north-west was affected by scattered showers and strong winds at times. A band of rain spread north-eastwards on 3rd clearing by afternoon, leaving some showers for western areas. Rain in the west at first on 4th, clearing eastwards during the afternoon with showers following. Showers continued in the north-west on 5th, otherwise dry and sunny after a widespread frost. Another frosty start on 6th with Braemar (Aberdeenshire) recording −5.1 °C, then dry and sunny. The 7th saw mist and fog patches clearing in many areas to give a dry and bright day although fog persisted in some central areas. A much cloudier day on 8th away from the far north, with patchy drizzle affecting some eastern areas. A dry but cloudy start on 9th then rain spread from the south-west during the afternoon, with 22.2 mm recorded at Glenlee (Dumfries and Galloway). Some rain in the morning of 10th for north-eastern areas, but otherwise a dry and bright day with temperatures reaching 15 °C in the Glasgow and Edinburgh areas.

11th to 20th:

A dry day for most on 11th although rain spread from the south-west in the late afternoon. The 12th and 13th were cloudy with scattered showers affecting mainly north-western areas. The 14th to 16th were generally dry, cloudy days but patchy light drizzle affected some eastern coasts at times. The 17th saw a band of rain spread from the south-west with some heavy bursts for western areas; 125.6mm was recorded at Alltdearg House (Isle of Skye). The 18th saw rain continue to affect western areas with the east generally dry and mild, allowing temperatures to reach 15.5 °C at Lossiemouth (Moray) and Grangemouth (Falkirk). The 19th and 20th saw scattered showers in western and central areas, with dry and bright weather elsewhere.

21st to 30th:

On 21st showers became more widespread although eastern areas remained largely dry. Rain spread eastwards overnight on 22nd clearing most areas by morning, leaving a largely dry, bright day. Further rain spread slowly from the north-west on 23rd, heaviest and most prolonged in the west and becoming more showery in the east. A few coastal showers for the morning of 24th then rain spread from the west during the afternoon accompanied by strong winds. A showery and windy day on 25th with gusts exceeding 55 mph in western and northern areas and over 25 mm of rain in the north-west. The Central belt experienced the strongest winds on 26th, with a 73 mph gust at Inverbervie (Aberdeenshire), and western areas had heavy rain with falls over 30 mm; 80.6 mm was recorded at Cluanie Inn (Highland). The 27th was cooler and still windy with a 75 mph gust at Altnaharra (Highland) and scattered showers in northern and western areas. A generally dry day for eastern areas on 28th but rain spread to the west during the afternoon with some heavy bursts, giving totals over 25 mm; 54.8 mm was recorded at Glasgow. A wet start on 29th especially in the west, the rain clearing during the afternoon to leave showers and strong winds with a 60 mph gust at Eskdalemuir (Dumfries and Galloway). Showers in the morning of 30th gave way to rain and strong winds during the afternoon with the west again faring worst.

Northern Ireland Diary of Highlights

The first half of the month saw plenty of dry mild weather, with just the occasional wetter day. It then turned more unsettled with rain or showers, especially in the last week when winds were strong at times. The mean temperature was 2.2 °C above the 1981-2010 average, making it the second warmest November in over 100 years with only November 1994 warmer. The number of air frosts was among the lowest for November in the last 50 years. Rainfall totals were close to normal. It was a relatively sunny month, with around 20% more sunshine hours than normal.

1st to 10th:

A dry and bright day on 1st with sunny spells, but patchy rain and strong winds returned to most areas on 2nd with a 50 mph gust at Orlock Head (County Down). The 3rd was a showery day with some strong winds again. Rain cleared early on 4th leaving more settled conditions. A touch of frost away from the coast on 5th then dry and sunny. More widespread frost early on 6th and 7th with a dry and sunny day following. The 8th saw a return to patchy rain or drizzle with some mist and fog patches for central areas. The 9th was generally a wet day with Helens Bay (County Down) recording 20.4 mm although the rain cleared north-eastwards later in the afternoon. A mild, dry day on 10th with sunny spells, the temperature reaching 15.3 °C at Armagh (County Armagh).

11th to 19th:

A dry start on 11th but rain soon spread from the south-west with Banagher (County Londonderry) recording 28.4 mm. The next few days were dry, with some sunny spells on 12th but 13th to 16th were generally cloudy. The 17th and 18th saw a return to unsettled weather with patchy rain for most areas and although 19th started wet, clearer weather spread from the west in the afternoon.

20th to 30th:

The 20th was a dry but cloudy day. Rain returned on 21st with a band spreading from the west during the morning to cover most areas by evening. A dry bright day on 22nd then rain or showers for much of the day on 23rd. A bright start on 24th but rain and strong winds spread in during the afternoon with a 56 mph gust recorded at Castlederg (County Tyrone). The windy theme continued on 25th with scattered showers during the afternoon. Another stormy day on 26th, with a gust of 66 mph at Killowen (County Down), and rain spreading from the west in the afternoon. Winds remained strong on 27th, with a 61 mph gust at Orlock Head, and it was cooler with scattered showers. A dry start on 28th before scattered showers developed and persistent rain spread from the west in the late afternoon, with widespread falls over 20 mm and 37.0 mm recorded at Derrygonelly (County Fermanagh). Another wet and windy start on 29th, the rain clearing in the afternoon to leave scattered showers. The 30th began with showers but more general rain spread from the west in the afternoon accompanied by strong winds, with a gust of 55 mph at Orlock Head.

Last updated: 2 August 2013