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Autumn 2011

The following represents an assessment of the weather experienced across the UK during autumn 2011 (September, October and November) and how it compares with the averages for the period 1981 to 2010.

The UK mean temperature for autumn was 11.3 °C, which is 1.8 °C above average. It was the second warmest autumn in over 100 years, with only that of 2006 warmer (11.4 °C). The number of air frosts was the lowest in the last 50 years. In central England, it was the second warmest autumn in over 350 years. Mean temperatures were 1.1 °C above average in September, 1.8 °C above in October and 2.5 °C above in November. A spell of exceptionally warm weather occurred in late September and early October, with new October temperature records set for England, Wales and the UK. November was the second warmest across the UK in over 100 years with only November 1994 warmer; in Scotland it was the warmest November on record.

The UK autumn rainfall was 96% of normal. Amounts were close to average during both September (113%) and October (97%) but below average in November (83%). However, there were large variations across the country, from the relatively dry south-east to the much wetter north-west. Each month saw less than half the normal amount in various parts of south-east and eastern England and the Midlands. Over 150% of normal fell in western Scotland and north-west England in September and in western Scotland and Northern Ireland in October. Western Scotland was also wetter than normal in November. It was the wettest autumn on record in Northern Ireland, just wetter than autumn 2000. In contrast, it was the driest autumn since 1978 in the Midlands, and the driest since 1985 in East Anglia and south-east England.

Sunshine durations over the UK were very close to average during each month. However, there were marked differences across the UK, notably in October which was one of the dullest on record over Northern Ireland and western Scotland but one of the sunniest over East Anglia. November was much sunnier than normal across the Western Isles and northern Scotland where it was the sunniest November on record.

UK statistical summary
Mean temperature Rainfall Sunshine
The mean value is 11.3 °C, which is 1.8 °C above the 1981-2010 average. The total is 332 mm, which is 96% of the 1981-2010 average. The total is 277 hours, which is 101% of the 1981-2010 average.

Graph of UK daily mean temperature for Autumn 2011


Mean temperature anomaly (difference from average) map for Autumn 2011


Rainfall percent of average map for Autumn 2011


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