Bring me sunshine

28 February 2008

Provisional figures released today by the Met Office show that the UK has recorded the sunniest February since the UK-wide record began in 1929.

Sunshine totals for the month up to and including the 27th reveals that UK-wide figure for the month was 106.1 hours, beating the previous record set in 1970 of 94.4 hours.

Around the UK national and regional records have also been falling with England and Wales setting new national records for February. Figures for Northern Ireland and Scotland have not beaten their previous sunshine records.

The UK, England and Wales have all had one of the sunniest winters since records began in 1929.

Tomorrow marks the end to the meteorological winter and, once again, mean temperatures across the UK are on course to exceed the long-term average.

The provisional UK mean temperature for the winter (1 December - 27 February) is 4.8 °C, which is 1.1 °C above the long-term average.

Despite some wide variations during the winter, rainfall totals for the UK have been above the long-term average.

The themes borne out this winter were highlighted by the Met Office winter forecast issued in September.

Met Office seasonal forecast expert Richard Graham said: "There are a great many challenges facing seasonal forecasters but this latest winter forecast has proved their worth. The Met Office remains committed to developing and researching techniques to deliver more accurate and detailed longer-term forecasts."   

More about UK climate

Notes

  • The meteorological winter are the months of December, January and February
  • Long-term average records refer to the 30-year average between the years of 1971 and 2000
  • National and regional sunshine records start in 1929
  • National and regional temperature and rainfall records start in 1914
Provisional 1-27 February 2008
Region Mean temp Sunshine Rainfall
Actual
[°C]
Anom
[°C]
Actual
[hours]
Anom
[%]
Current/previous record
[hours]
Actual
[mm]
Anom
[%]
UK 4.8 1.4 106.1 166 94.4 (1970) 70.7 81
England 5.1 1.2 122.3 181 109.2 (1988) 31.7 53
Wales 5.0 1.2 114.0 180 98.1 (2004/1986) 71.8 63
Scotland 4.2 1.7 80.3 138 92.6 (1963) 139.4 113
N Ireland 5.4 1.3 88.1 146 101.2 (2004) 45.3 52
Provisional 1 Dec 2007 - 27 February 2008
Region Mean temp Sunshine Rainfall
Actual
[°C]
Anom
[°C]
Actual
[hours]
Anom
[%]
Actual
[mm]
Anom
[%]
UK 4.8 1.1 196.2 137 381.6 115
England 5.4 1.2 227.0 140 249.6 106
Wales 5.3 1.2 204.7 145 518.9 116
Scotland 3.6 1.0 148.8 131 568.2 123
N Ireland 5.4 1.1 165.2 124 354.8 109

Last updated: 13 May 2011