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Cold for the New Year

It’s all change as far as the weather is concerned. The unsettled, mild weather of Christmas is a thing of the past as many of us see colder, more settled, and at times sunny, weather as we head towards the New Year.

High pressure is once again regaining control over the UK bringing colder and more settled conditions.  Fog and ice are likely to be an issue for many over the next few days.  The fog could be slow to clear at times and together with the risk of ice this could well affect road and air travel.

Deputy Chief Meteorologist, Steve Ramsdale, said; “There is plenty of good news in the forecast for those heading out and about, much of the country will be dry with many places seeing spells of sunshine. The far north of the UK will see some rain at times and it will also be windy, but nothing compared to recent days. “

RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said: “Drivers’ are facing a mix of hazards – notably much colder temperatures, ice and fog that is slow to clear. Lingering fog calls for drivers to adjust their speed and maintain longer stopping distances. Use dipped headlights, but don’t be tempted to use full beam – thick fog simply reflects the light back making it even harder to see. Only use your car’s fog lights if visibility is badly reduced, as using them when it’s not means you risk dazzling other drivers.

"Motorists should remember that if their car thermometer records a temperature of 4 degrees or lower, there is a good chance the road temperature is near or even below freezing, meaning a very real risk of ice and slippery roads. Keep listening to traffic reports before you start your trip and if conditions are bad, aim to stick to major routes which are much more likely to be gritted."

New Year’s Eve

New Years Eve is looking cloudy and breezy, but largely dry for much of England and Wales, with the brightest weather in the east. A band of rain, sometimes heavy, will affect the northwest and slowly move south towards central England and Wales.

Behind the rain the temperatures are expected to turn colder with some snow showers for the far north of Scotland along with strong winds.  Southern England however will remain relatively mild until New Year’s Day.

 

Look back at the festive storms

Storm Barbara and Storm Conor brought strong winds and rain to northern parts of the UK. Both were low pressure systems that had been moved across the Atlantic as a result of high pressure over Europe breaking down and the jet stream strengthening.

Storm Barbara brought wet and very windy weather to much of Britain on Fri 23 Dec and Sat 24 Dec with a peak wind gust of provisionally 85 mph at Sella Ness in Shetland.

Gale force winds, snow and lightning affected Scotland during Storm Conor on Christmas Day (25 December) and into Boxing Day (26 December), with a peak gust of provisionally 94 mph also at Sella Ness in Shetland on Boxing Day morning.  Northern Ireland and northern parts of England and Wales also experienced strong winds and periods of heavy rainfall. Southern regions missed the worst of the weather, remaining mostly dry and mild, with winds much less of a feature.

As well as bringing wind and rain the low pressure systems also pulled warm air up from the subtropical mid-Atlantic, leading to a very mild Christmas Day. A maximum temperature of 15.1C was recorded at Aberdeen Dyce airport, Aberdeenshire, just shy of the Christmas Day UK maximum temperature record of 15.6C (Killerton, Devon in 1920 and Leith, Midlothian in 1896).

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