Posted: Fri 1st Mar 2024

Met Office: Warmest February on record for Wales and England despite heavy rainfall

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales

The Met Office has released provisional data confirming that Wales and England experienced their warmest Februarys on record.

The unprecedented warmth was accompanied by above-average rainfall and decreased sunshine duration, signalling a noteworthy departure from typical February weather patterns.

In England, the average temperature for February 2024 soared to 7.5°C, surpassing the previous record set in 1990 by 0.5 degrees. Similarly, Wales saw its mean temperature reach 6.9°C, marginally ahead of the previous record set in 1998.

Despite falling short of breaking its own record, the UK experienced its second warmest February, with an average temperature of 6.3°C.

This trend of rising temperatures is further highlighted by the inclusion of recent years, including 2024, 2023, 2022, and 2019, among the UK’s top ten warmest Februarys on record.

According to Met Office Senior Scientist Mike Kendon, the month of February was characterised by mild and wet weather, particularly across the southern half of the country.

While the UK experienced a cold spell in the north during the first half of the month, the predominant theme was persistent mildness and wetness, attributed largely to the influence of Atlantic low-pressure systems.

The unusually warm conditions were not limited to temperature alone; the month also saw above-average rainfall, with southern England experiencing its wettest February since records began in 1836.

Areas such as East Anglia witnessed both their warmest and wettest February on record, reflecting the exceptional nature of the weather patterns observed during the month.

However, despite the warmth and rainfall, February was a relatively dull month for much of the UK, with decreased sunshine duration recorded across Wales and parts of southern England.

The winter season of 2023/24 followed a similar pattern of warmth and wetness, contributing to the UK’s fifth warmest winter on record.

With above-average temperatures and increased rainfall, the winter season highlighted the ongoing trend of climate change and its impact on UK weather patterns.

While the observations point to a clear warming trend in average UK temperatures, the Met Office emphasises that cold spells are still expected to occur, albeit less frequently and with reduced severity.

However, projections indicate that winters will continue to become wetter, with summers potentially becoming drier, as the atmosphere’s capacity to hold moisture increases due to climate change.

 

 

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