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February 2007

The averaging period used for the following assessment was 1961-1990.

UK overview

Mean temperatures generally 2 to 3 °C above average across England, Wales and Scotland, but only around 1 to 1.5 °C above average across Northern Ireland. Most areas had above average rainfall, with over double the average rainfall across parts of SW England, much of SE England and E Scotland. The SE & Central S England district area provisionally had its wettest February since 1990 and highest monthly rainfall anomaly since November 2002. Sunshine levels were well above average across NE England, but below average across Northern Scotland.

England diary of highlights

Very mild. A dry and fine start to the month, but then generally unsettled, with rainfall well above average for the month. Significant and widespread snow occurred on the 8th and 9th.

1st to 5th: A largely dry and settled start to the month, although cloudy at times. Overnight frost and fog patches occurred widely, with the sunniest conditions on the 3rd. Temperatures generally above average.

6th and 7th: It stayed mostly dry and settled. However, cooler conditions and some snow showers spread southwards across northern England, and rain moved in across the south-west too.

8th to 10th: Snow spread widely north-eastwards on the 8th and 9th, with 10 cm accumulating in places, whilst some maximum temperatures only just climbed above freezing. The north-east saw wintry showers rather than more persistent snow, and the south-west had rain generally. The unsettled conditions continued on the 10th, although it was mostly rain that fell then, with snow on hills. Torquay reached 12 °C.

11th to 12th: Largely showery on the 11th and 12th with some thunder and hail at times, but drier conditions spread in from the west later on the 12th. Temperatures back to above average.

13th to 16th: Mostly fine on the 13th, but rain spreading from the west, sometimes heavy, pushed across most parts on the 14th, driest in the north. Cloudy and windy conditions with some gales affected northern and western parts on the 15th with fine weather elsewhere. Rain, some heavy, then returned on the 16th although the south-east was more showery with London reaching 13.3 °C. Temperatures remaining above average.

17th to 22nd: Largely cloudy with some drizzle in the south on the 17th and 18th, but fine in the north once morning fog cleared. Cloud and rain spread over western parts on the 19th with drier weather elsewhere. That rain then pushed east on the 20th with showers following to the west. The 21st was largely fine, but rain reached western parts later, and this spread across all parts with showers following eastwards on the 22nd. Temperatures remaining above average.

23rd to 28th: Showers dominated from the 23rd to the 25th with some more persistent rain over southern parts on the night of the 24th. Showers became more isolated with plenty of fine weather on the 26th, but much of the 27th was cloudy and quite windy with outbreaks of rain. Frequent showers then blew across on the 28th with some heavy bursts around, and an area of heavy rain pushed across southern parts late in the day. Temperatures remaining above average.

Wales diary of highlights

Although the first week was often dry with light winds and overnight frosts the rest of the month was often cloudy, windy and mild with spells of rain. Significant snowfall occurred on the 8th and 9th.

1st to 7th: High pressure dominated this first week with a good deal of dry weather with light winds. Although there was some overnight frost and patchy fog temperatures by day were generally well above average at first although it did become colder towards the end of the period with more frost.

8th to 14th: Low pressure dominated this week with a succession of Atlantic frontal systems pushing in from the west and south-west to give a lot of cloudy and wet weather. However at the start of this period cold air was reluctant to give way and many areas had significant snowfall of 10 to 15 cm before the milder air pushed in.

15th to 21st: The changeable weather continued although there were a couple of quieter and mainly dry days with light winds. The 8th was exceptionally mild with parts of north Wales recording maximum temperatures of 14 °C.

22nd to 28th: Another week dominated by low pressure and mild west to south-west winds, these strong to gale force on the 22nd and the 28th. With rain falling on most days it was often cloudy but the temperatures stayed well above average, often above 10 °C by day with north Wales again exceptionally mild on the 27th with maximum temperature of 14 to 15 °C.

Scotland diary of highlights

Temperatures well above average for the month. Very wet across the north-east, with Aberdeen recording over twice the monthly average rainfall.

Rain in the north-west on the 1st, but bright in the east, with Dyce reaching 15 °C. Rain cleared by 2nd, leaving almost unbroken sunshine across Scotland, although a few wintry showers in the far north. Locally frosty start on 3rd with fog patches, lingering across the Solway coast, otherwise dry and sunny. On the 4th, light showers moved south. Sleet and snow showers affected Northern Scotland on 5th and 6th but dry and sunny further south. Locally severe night frosts with Eskdalemuir dipping to -8.6 °C on the morning of the 6th. Further showers of sleet or snow affected North Sea Coasts through the 7th, clear, bright or sunny elsewhere with a widespread overnight frost, with a temperature of -8 °C being recorded at Eskdalemuir and Glenlivet. A cold night into the 8th, with a temperature of -10.7 °C at Altnaharra and -8.9 °C at Aviemore. Sleet, hail and snow showers affected northern and eastern parts, with further wintry showers on the 9th.

The 10th was cold with outbreaks of rain, sleet and snow with strong to gale force easterly winds. The snow was heaviest during the afternoon over exposed eastern hills with significant accumulations. The 11th was mainly cloudy with rain, heaviest in the north-east, with Fyvie Castle recording 41.8 mm in the 24 hours to 0900 UTC. Shetland was still cold enough for sleet and wet snow, with easterly gales adding to the raw feel. Some sunshine broke through in the south and west. The 12th was another grim day for the north-east and the Northern Isles, with persistent rain, amounting to 20 mm at Fair Isle. After a damp start, the south and west brightened up during the afternoon, allowing Islay to reach a temperature of 9.9 °C.

The 13th and 14th saw frosts in the north-east, otherwise bright with some showers.

Very windy with heavy rain in the west on the 15th, but drier and brighter in the east. Very mild temperatures, with 12 °C being reached in the Moray Firth. 41 mm of rainfall was recorded at Tyndrum, and a gust of 76 m.p.h. at South Uist.

The 16th and 17th were dry and bright but showery in the north-west. Mainly dry with sunny spells on the 18th, but cloudy on the 19th with rain, heaviest in the south and west. Winds becoming strong to near gale force along the West Coast. Rain became confined to Shetland on the 20th with sunny spells following from the south. Dry and bright on the 21st but rain affected the north-east. Mostly cloudy and rather wet on the 22nd, with severe gales over Shetland and gusts to 66 m.p.h. at Sella Ness.

The 23rd through to 26th saw cloudy, showery conditions, especially in the north and east, with 15 mm at Lerwick on the 24th. Drier and brighter in the south and west, with 12 °C being recorded at Edinburgh Gogarbank on the 23rd.

On the 27th, rain, heavy at times and preceded by snow, mainly over the hills, was followed by heavy showers. 47.4 mm of rain fell at Kinlochewe, and temperatures reached 13.5 °C at Machrihanish. Strong south-east veering south-west winds, with coastal gales. Further heavy rain in the west on the 28th, but drier and brighter in the east.

Northern Ireland diary of highlights

Temperatures above average for the month, despite a fairly cool start to the month. Above average rainfall across the north-east, but close to average elsewhere.

Rather cloudy on the 1st but cloud and patchy rain cleared overnight into the 2nd to leave almost unbroken sunshine. Frosty start with some fog patches on the 3rd, with a temperature of -6 °C at Katesbridge, then mostly dry and sunny. The 4th was mainly dry but fog persisted all day in some parts. Light showers edged in from the north during the evening. It was cold where fog lingered, with Aldergrove only recording a maximum temperature of 2 °C.

Fog cleared on the morning of 5th, otherwise sunny spells and a few light showers, especially in the north and wintry on hills. Snow showers gave a few cm of snow to the north coast early on the 6th. Some freezing fog patches lingered through the day, with Castlederg failing to rise above freezing. Elsewhere it was largely sunny and dry.

This dry weather continued through most of the 7th, with mist and fog slow to clear through the morning. The overnight temperature fell to -8 °C in Castlederg and St Angelo. Sleet and snow spread from the south-west during the evening. On the 8th, the north was dry with sunny spells but patchy light rain, sleet and snow in the south-west, edged very slowly north-east during the day.

The 9th saw patchy rain, sleet and snow in the extreme east but some long sunny and clear spells in the north and west.

Cloudy on the 10th, with outbreaks of rain in the east, which were locally heavy in the north-east. Heavier rain spread north-east during the evening. A wet night ensued with Ballycastle recording 20.8 mm. Conditions improved markedly on the morning of the 11th with some sunny spells developing but another area of rain spread north-east in the afternoon.

Rain cleared the south-east early on the 12th then a bright day with a mixture of sunshine and scattered showers. Another mild day, with temperatures reaching 10 °C in many areas. A chilly start on the 13th, with a bright or sunny morning. Cloud thickened up during the afternoon bringing rain during the evening. A widespread ground frost and local air frost on the morning of the 14th, with a temperature of -2.7 °C at Katesbridge. Then a fine, bright day, but patchy rain arrived during the evening.

Wet and windy on the 15th, with 17.6 mm recorded at St Angelo up to midnight, and a gust of 61 m.p.h. recorded at Orlock Head. The 16th and the 17th were mainly dry with some sunshine, though with a few showers in the west. On the 17th, Aldergrove was foggy until early afternoon.

Fog returned here on the 18th, but cleared much earlier. Another mainly dry day but patchy rain reached the west during the evening. The 19th was cloudy with rain at times but cleared overnight to leave the 20th bright or sunny, although showery rain broke out during the evening. The 21st was mainly dry and bright but rain reached all parts during the evening.

Rain cleared early on the 22nd, then mainly dry and bright with scattered showers. Temperatures reached 13.6 °C at Ballykelly. Showers spread from the west on the 23rd, and it remained showery through to the 26th. Outbreaks of locally heavy rain during the morning of the 27th, being replaced by sunny or clear spells and showers. 10 to 15 mm of rain fell widely and temperatures reached 14.6 °C at Newry. The 28th was rather cloudy with further showers or longer spells of rain.

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