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August 2014

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

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UK overview

August was an often unsettled month with some large daily rainfall totals in some areas. Ex-Hurricane 'Bertha' passed over the UK on 10th to 11th bringing some unseasonably windy and wet weather, before moving into the North Sea and maintaining a cool and showery regime. The second half of the month saw some notably cool days and nights with some early ground frosts, and remained unsettled resulting in a cool and wet month overall.

The UK mean temperature was 13.9 °C, 1.0 °C below the 1981-2010 long-term average. This was the coolest August for the UK since 1993, ending a sequence of eight warmer than average months. Rainfall was above average, particularly across northern Scotland which had its wettest August in a series from 1910. The UK overall received 155% of average rainfall and this was equal-eighth wettest in the series. It was a slightly sunnier than average month in the north and west with 105% of average sunshine hours for the UK overall.

A maximum temperature of 27.2 °C was recorded at St James Park (Greater London) on the 7th. A minimum temperature of -2.1 °C was recorded at Braemar (Aberdeenshire) on the 25th. In the 24 hours ending at 0900 GMT on the 12th, 135.6 mm of rain fell at Torridon (Wester Ross). A wind gust of 64 mph was recorded at Needles Old Battery (Isle of Wight) on the 10th.

Weather impacts

Heavy showers caused some localised flooding in parts of the country through the first half of the month, including Cambridgeshire on the 8th and south east London on the 14th. A weather system that preceded ex-hurricane Bertha on the 9th resulted in some exceptional daily rainfall totals in the Northern Isles, with 132.6 mm at Fair Isle being the highest daily total in a series from 1974, far exceeding the previous record of 46.2 mm from 4th November 1996.

A depression associated with ex-hurricane Bertha crossed the UK on 10th causing disruption in many areas. Localised flash flooding affected a number of towns and cities across England including some evacuation of properties in Lincolnshire. In Scotland 200 properties were evacuated in Elgin which was one of the worst affected areas. Flooding, fallen trees, and landslips caused disruption to rail and road transport links across parts of Scotland. An important footbridge for walkers in the Cairngorms at the foot of Glen Derry was also washed away.

England diary of highlights

The month opened with a spell of showery weather and isolated thunderstorms interspersed with some fine and bright weather. Heavy rain affected many areas from the 8th and stormy weather on the 10th associated with ex-Hurricane Bertha established the theme for a generally unsettled and wet month for many. A northerly flow resulted in some particularly cool nights from the 20th. The late August bank holiday on the 25th saw some high rainfall totals across the south of England, but brighter and warmer weather returned for many on the last few days of the month.

The mean temperature for the month was 1.1 °C below the 1981-2010 average. Rainfall overall was 155% of average, but some areas that were affected by localised intense downpours during the month saw more than twice the average rainfall. Sunshine amounts were close to average for most areas with 103% of average overall.

1st to 7th:

There were spells of rain or showers for many areas on the 1st with only the southeast escaping mainly dry. A band of heavy showers with isolated thunderstorms spread from the west during the 2nd, clearing eastern areas by late afternoon. The showers were less frequent and more scattered on the 3rd with most in western areas. Most areas enjoyed a fine day on the 4th with any showers mainly in the southwest. Areas of patchy rain spread from the west on the 5th, the heaviest in western and central areas. The 6th was mainly dry with sunny spells although there were scattered showers for eastern coastal areas. It was generally dry, sunny and hot on the 7th with temperatures reaching 27 oC in London although isolated showers broke out in East Anglia in the late afternoon.

8th to 18th:

It was a mainly fine start on the 8th but heavy showers and thunderstorms broke out widely in the afternoon with the heaviest in Humberside and Yorkshire where Bramham (West Yorkshire) recorded 64mm; there was also some significant flooding in Cambridgeshire. A mainly dry and bright day on the 9th with scattered showers in the west but rain and strong winds spread into the southwest during the evening. It was a stormy day on the 10th as the remnants of Hurricane Bertha brought strong winds and heavy rain to many areas; the winds gusting to 50 mph in many eastern areas and the heaviest rain in the Humberside area with Normanby Hall (Humberside) recording 51mm. The 11th was a day of sunny spells and showers, the heaviest and most frequent in the southern half of the country with isolated thunderstorms. The showers on the 12th were more scattered and generally less frequent although some heavy ones with thunder developed in the Midlands during the afternoon. The 13th was also a day of sunny spells and showers but the showers were generally more scattered and lighter; feeling cooler in a northwest wind. The 14th was again a day of sunshine and showers, these generally light and scattered but becoming heavier in the north-west and south-east during the afternoon. There was some sunshine on the 15th with showers developing in the north of England and isolated showers in the south-east. The 16th was mainly dry with some sunshine but cloud and some rain moved into the north of England by the evening. A narrow band of rain moved from north to south in the morning with showers developing for the north and Midlands on the 17th. Sunshine and showers, some heavy on the east coast by the afternoon on the 18th.

19th to 24th:

The 19th and 20th were cooler with sunshine and more isolated, light showers but otherwise dry. The 21st started mainly bright with isolated showers but a band of rain spread from the northwest during the afternoon, reaching the southeast during the evening. The 22nd was a day of sunshine and isolated showers although some heavy ones developed in eastern areas in the afternoon. The showers were more widespread and frequent on the 23rd with the heaviest ones again in the east. A bright but chilly start on the 24th with areas in Dorset falling to 3°C but it was a bright day for many although rain edged into the far southwest during the late afternoon.

25th to 31st:

The country was split on the 25th with the northern half mainly dry and bright and southern half being wet for much of the day with areas of Kent and London recording over 35 mm of rain. An area of rain affected southern areas for much of the 26th with other areas dry but mainly cloudy; remaining cool in a northwest wind. The 27th was generally dry and bright but rain spread into the southwest during the afternoon. A narrow band of rain spread from the west during the morning of the 28th and reached eastern areas later in the afternoon. Areas of rain affected many central and western areas on the 29th with the east mainly dry with sunny spells. The 30th was generally dry and bright although isolated showers developed in some central areas during the afternoon. The 31st was dry with sunny spells and felt noticeably warmer.

Wales diary of highlights

The month saw generally rather cool and unsettled weather with some high rainfall totals in the first few days and a stormy period around 10th. Temperatures were generally below average for the time of year. However, there were also some brief spells of fine weather during the month.

The mean temperature for August was 1.0 °C below the 1981-2010 average. Rainfall overall was 133% of average, and it was particularly wet in the south-east. Sunshine amounts were very close to average at 99%.

1st to 8th:

The 1st was cloudy with periods of rain, heavy at times; 45.6 mm was recorded at Aberporth (Ceredigion). Rain during the morning cleared to leave drier and sunnier conditions on the 2nd. The 3rd was generally dry and sunny with the exception being the far north-west which had some cloud and showers. The 4th was sunny with showers developing in the south through the day. The 5th had patchy rain breaking into showers by the afternoon. Heavy rain came in from the west during the evening giving 45.6 mm at Valley (Anglesey). There was some sunshine with some scattered showers after the rain passed through in the early hours of the 6th. Dry with sunshine on the 7th. Mainly dry again on the 8th with patchy sunshine.

9th to 21st:

The 9th started sunny but cloud and rain came in from the west by the evening. Rain, heavy at times, continued in the morning of the 10th which broke up into heavy showers by the afternoon with a strong to near gale force wind at times. The 11th had sunshine and showers, at times heavy particularly in the south-east of the country. Sunshine and showers again on the 12th and 13th. The 14th had showers merging into rain during the morning and into the afternoon, particularly for the central and south-east of the country. Generally dry with some sunshine and scattered showers on the 15th. The 16th was mainly dry but cooler with temperatures only into the mid teens. Sunshine and showers and continuing cool for the time of year from the 17th to the 21st.

22nd to 31st:

The 22nd had some showers in the north during the morning then all areas become sunny. Sunshine with some showers in the central and northern areas again on the 23rd. The 24th started dry and bright but a band of cloud and rain moved in by the afternoon extending to most areas by evening. The 25th was cloudy with rain becoming more extensive from the south through the morning and into the afternoon, only clearing by late afternoon or evening. Rain on the morning of the 26th broke up and was then mainly dry for the rest of the day but a lot of cloud in the south of the region. The 27th started dry but was quite cloudy with some bands of rain moving in from the south-west by late afternoon and evening. Rain moved in from the west during the morning of the 28th, then passed through becoming mainly dry with an isolated shower in the afternoon. The 29th was generally cloudy with periods of rain throughout the day, particularly inland over the hills. It was quite cloudy on the 30th with some showers in the north of the region. It was mainly dry and sunny on the 31st with some cloud and patchy rain into the west during the evening.

Scotland diary of highlights

The month was generally unsettled with a mix of rain and showers. There was a particularly wet and stormy period from 9th to 12th with some disruption caused by flooding and high winds, followed by a return to more sunshine and showers. However, the 24th to 27th brought a good deal of drier, sunnier weather, especially to the north-west Highlands.

The mean temperature for the month was 0.8 °C below the 1981-2010 average. Rainfall overall was 163% of average, the fifth wettest August for Scotland in a series from 1910. Much of northern Scotland received twice the normal rainfall amount and here it was the wettest August in the series. Lerwick, Shetland recorded the wettest August on record in a 100-year series, while on 9th August Fair Isle recorded 132 mm, by far the highest daily total here in a series from 1974. Despite the wet weather, sunshine amounts were above average, particularly in the west, and Scotland overall received 109% of average sunshine hours.

1st to 8th:

A showery day for most areas on the 1st with longer periods of rain in the south. Heavy rain in the south west spread north and east through the day on the 2nd. Another wet start in the west on the 3rd as rain spread further north and east and became more showery later in the day. It was a showery start in the west on the 4th but by the afternoon it was mostly dry across the country. A dry start for most areas on the 5th apart from some showers in the west but an area of rain spread across the southern part of the country later in the afternoon. A wet start for many areas on the 6th as rain in the south moved slowly north through the day and was replaced by heavy and thundery showers. The 7th was mainly dry and bright for southern areas but there were scattered showers for the northern half of the country. A bright start for many areas on the 8th but showers and thunderstorms broke out in the afternoon and gradually spread to northern areas during the evening.

9th to 12th:

The 9th was generally cloudy but dry with only a few isolated showers in the west but it was very wet and windy in the Northern Isles with Fair Isle recording 132 mm. The 10th was a stormy day with winds gusting to 40 mph in many areas and heavy rain for most areas during the day; the heaviest rain was in the Moray area where Lossiemouth recorded 100 mm. The 11th was a wet and windy day with heavy rain for the northwest Highlands, more showery further south with Cluanie Inn (Highland) recording 81 mm. The rain in the north gradually moved south on the 12th with the heaviest bursts still in the northwest; again Cluanie Inn with 41 mm was the wettest.

13th to 23rd:

The 13th was a day of sunshine and showers with the showers mainly in the northwest Highlands and the Grampians. The 14th was another day of sunshine and showers with the heaviest in the south with the odd thundery downpour with Salsburgh (Lanarkshire) recording 11 mm in one hour during the afternoon. The 15th was mainly dry and rather cloudy with just a few isolated, light showers in the far south. The 16th was a cloudy day with rain gradually moving south with showers following on behind. The 17th was a day of sunshine and blustery showers with occasional thunder; the heaviest of the showers were in the northwest Highlands where Kinlochewe (Highland) recorded 34 mm. The 18th was another day of sunshine and showers with the showers being more prevalent over the northern half of the country. The 19th was again a day of sunshine and showers with the showers starting in the north and reaching the Central Belt by early evening. The 20th was mainly dry with bright or sunny spells although cloud and rain moved in from the west through the afternoon and spread east. The rain continued to move east on the 21st, clearing mid morning with heavy, thundery showers following behind. The 22nd was another day of sunshine and showers. The 23rd was another day of sunshine and scattered showers, the showers becoming isolated through the evening.

24th to 27th:

The 24th was a mainly dry day with good sunny spells with some rain arriving in the south later. The 25th was dry with good sunny spells, especially in the north-west Highlands. The 26th was again dry with a good deal of sunshine. The 27th started with some fog in the Central Belt but soon cleared to become dry with good sunny spells for most.

28th to 31st:

The 28th saw a front move in from the south early in the morning with patchy rain which moved northwards throughout the day with some showers following on behind.The 29th was unsettled with showers or longer spells of rain for many areas and Loch Glascarnoch (Highland ) recording 27 mm. There were some heavy showers in northern areas on the 30th but southern areas were mainly dry and bright. The 31st was dry and sunny for most areas although a band of rain spread into western areas during the late afternoon.

Northern Ireland diary of highlights

Much of the month was unsettled with rain and showers and some stormy weather around the 10th. There were some brief spells of fine and dry weather but also some low temperatures for the time of year with ground frosts in places on the 24th.

The mean temperature for the month was 0.9 °C below the 1981-2010 average. The month was wetter than average with 139% of average overall and the number of days with rain was notably high. However, it was also a sunny month with 113% of average sunshine hours.

1st to 9th:

On the 1st, some early rain cleared to leave a showery day, heaviest and most prolonged in the north but more widespread in the south later. The 2nd was a dull wet day, drier by late afternoon in places south of Belfast, 48.4 mm of rain was recorded at Ballypatrick Forest (County Antrim). A mainly bright start to the 3rd but heavy showers affected most areas throughout the day. The 4th was mainly dry and sunny. There was rain for most of the day on the 5th, heavy at times before clearing away northwards by evening. Some heavy showers on the 6th, dying away by evening. A bright, warm day on the 7th with scattered showers in the afternoon. There were widespread showers on the 8th, some heavy, dying away by late afternoon. The 9th saw sunshine and scattered showers.

10th to 14th:

Rain spread quickly north on the 10th, heavy and persistent at times and causing some flooding, before clearing away to more showery conditions and eventually dying out during the evening. There was a strong westerly wind with sunshine and scattered showers for the 11th. Showery rain on the 12th cleared away by evening but showers continued in the north through the night and into the 13th spreading south for a time in the morning. Showers at first in the north on the 14th but it become mainly dry and bright later.

15th to 27th:

A fine, dry day on the 15th as a ridge of high pressure briefly took control. The 16th was overcast and rain spread southwards in the afternoon leaving behind a fresh or strong north-westerly wind. Widespread scattered showers on the 17th, some blustery at first in the fresh northerly winds. Frequent scattered showers occurred on the 18th but it was drier in the southeast. Sunshine and scattered showers for the 19th to 22nd, cool in the northerly breeze. Scattered heavy showers in the morning of the 23rd but becoming dry and sunny in the afternoon. After a cold night with a touch of ground frost in places, the 24th was a fine dry day, but rain spread from the south during the evening. Some patchy rain overnight on 25th then a mainly dry morning before bands of showery rain affected many places in the afternoon. The 26th and 27th were generally fine and dry.

28th to 31st:

Rain overnight on the 28th cleared away leaving a mainly dry and bright day before some showery rain moved in late evening and overnight into the 29th and continued at times throughout the day, although some places in the south east were dry. It was showery in the south east on the 30th, drier and brighter in the north. A dry, bright morning on the 31st was followed by patchy rain later.

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