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Long Range Weather

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Forecast summary

Outlook for the UK over the next 6-30 days

UK Outlook for Tuesday 4 Oct 2016 to Thursday 13 Oct 2016:

Dry and bright through the middle part of the week in the east and south, however windy and cloudy across northern and western parts with outbreaks of rain, perhaps turning heavy and persistent. Through the remainder of the period, changeable conditions are likely in the northwest with stronger winds and showers or longer spells of rain, interspersed with drier, brighter periods. Eastern and southeastern parts should see more prolonged drier and brighter spells, though even here some rain is possible at times, but mostly light. Temperatures generally above normal in the east and southeast, with a warm feel at times. In the northwest temperatures will probably be a little above average, but in the wind and rain it will feel quite cool.

Updated at: 1202 on Thu 29 Sep 2016

UK Outlook for Friday 14 Oct 2016 to Friday 28 Oct 2016:

There is currently low confidence for the forecast during the second half of October, however the most likely scenario is for changeable conditions to dominate across most parts. The north and northwest are likely to see the most unsettled weather, with strong winds and showers or longer spells of rain, intermixed with some drier interludes. Further south and southeast there is a greater likelihood of drier, brighter weather with a low possibility of more prolonged settled spells here. Temperatures will vary through the period, but probably averaging out slightly above normal for the time of year, though with an increasing risk of overnight frost in the more settled spells, especially in the north.

Updated at: 1202 on Thu 29 Sep 2016

Long-range weather prediction

Predicting how the weather will behave over the coming hours, days, weeks and months is a complex undertaking. Each timescale presents its own challenges. In an ideal world, everyone would like to know exactly what the weather will do so we can make definite plans. Nature, however, doesn't work like that. When looking at forecasts beyond five days into the future the chaotic nature of the atmosphere starts to come into play - small events currently over the Atlantic can have potentially significant impacts on our weather in the UK in several days' time. Therefore whilst we can still forecast the general feel of the weather to a relatively high level of accuracy using our ensemble models, it becomes harder to offer local detail to as high a level of accuracy as our shorter range forecasts. For this reason our forecasts for 5 days and beyond are written on the scale of the UK as a whole.

Medium range (6 - 15 days)

Medium-range weather forecasts cover anything from around three to 10-days ahead. The UK medium-range outlook is covered in the five-day location and map-based forecasts as well as the meteorologist written forecasts. The 6-10 day text forecasts provide a broad description of the weather likely to be affecting the UK, including significant changes in the type of weather. It also provides a risk assessment of severe weather, such as heavy rainfall, severe gales or an extended period of high or low temperatures.

Extended-range (10 - 30 days)

Extended-range weather forecasts cover periods between 10 and 30-days ahead. This covers the end of our 6-15 day text forecast and the whole of our 16-30 day text forecast. If you are after a 14-day weather forecast then our 6-15 day text forecast will provide a broad description of the weather likely to be affecting the UK. The 16-30 day text outlook (which is updated on a daily basis) provides an indication of how the weather might change, or be different from normal, (i.e. warmer, colder, wetter, drier) across the whole UK. Met Office meteorologists consider output from a range of weather models when writing these forecasts. These models include those from the Met Office as well as models from other global forecasting centres such as the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts ( ECMWF).