1912

1912 had the worst August on record. Generally a very poor summer, redeemed by the extended summer months (May and September). The conventional meteorological summer was the wettest and dullest on record. There were 38 thunder days atr Stonyhurst (Yorks.). A cold year all round. This was just one of two occasions - in the twentieth century when an excellent June and July were followed by a poor August. 1912 was a cool wet year following a warm dry year.


January. Mild and fine at first. More unsettled with rain and snow between the 5th and 12th. There was more than a foot of snow at Birmingham on the 18th. The last ten days of the month were dry.

February. A very cold start, with snow showers and an easterly wind. -21C recorded at West Linton (E. Scotland) on the 4th. A southerly wind set in on the 6th and it became mild and unsettled for the rest of the month, although the month was drier than average in the east.

March. Unsettled and stormy.

April. Very dry in London, and still the driest on record in the SE. Cold: colder than March on average. It was though an extremely sunny month.

May. Mild, dull, and dry except for parts of the north. 28C was exceeded at Greenwich on the 11th.

June. Cold, wet, and dull. There was a prolonged wet spell from the 9th to the 19th (150 mm of rain in London). Thunderstorms were recorded on 14 days at Clitheroe (Lancs.). It was a little warmer briefly around the 20th, with 29C (84F) recorded at Greenwich.

July. In the cold, wet summer, lucky Clitheroe picked up another 9 thunder-days. The first three weeks of the month were relatively speaking the best of the summer, being faitly dry and sunny. 32.8C was recorded at Camden and Tottenham on the 12th, making it the hottest day of the year. It was still duller than average, and the final ten days were very wet. Overall it was dry in the SE but wet in the Midlands.

August. The wettest (average 183 mm, 231%), dullest, and the coldest (12.9C CET) of the century. This is the only month which holds all three worst records, so it is without doubt the worst summer month on record. London only had one day over 21C, but Birmingham and Manchester had nothing higher than 19C. It didn't make 16C at all in Aberdeen. There was local frost on the 3rd. Some places had 250% of the normal rainfall. There were many days with over 25 mm of rain and maxima beneath 16C. On the 26th a deepening depression brough severe weather to East Anglia, resulting in the Great Norfolk Flood. There were 206 mm at Brundall, and 186 mm of rain at Norwich, with the rain continuing for 30 hours from the 26th into the 27th. The pressure at Great Yarmouth was 978 mbars. 100 mm of rain was widespread over Norfolk and Suffolk, with a westerly gale. The worst flooding caused by rain in East Anglia on record. Norwich was cut off for two days, with over 40 bridges destroyed, with flooding 15' deep in places. Three people drowned, an one particular variety of Norwich canary was lost. Much of the Fens stayed under water through the following winter. Widespread gales midmonth. It was not surprisingly an extremely dull month, with an average of just 94 hours. The highest temperature recorded all month was under 23C (73F) at Welshpool on the 4th.

September. A very cool month: the second coldest September of the century (11.1C CET). The warmest day was a mere 17.8 at Hampstead on the 8th, and only 8.3 on the 12th at Buxton. It is unlikely that the reported snow on the 10th was genuine; it was much more likely, according to Edden (1995), to be hail. Overall it was a dry month, although the final two days were wet. It was dull everywhere except for northern Scotland.

October. The wettest this century (e.g. 450mm in the Lake District). Not surprisingly therefore, there was widespread flooding. It was also a cold month (8.2C). There was a foggy spell late in the month. On the 25th it only reached 4.1C in Nottingham.

November. Very dull. Just 9 hours sunshine in Manchester, 11 in Birmingham and Glasgow, and 12 in London: these were the days of the smog. Very wet in Western Scotland.

December. Also unsettled, wet, and mild: a very westerly month. It was particularly wet in the west: 406 mm on Dartmoor, 598 mm at Borrowdale in the Lake District, and 756 mm at Loch Quoich (Invernessshire). There was a notable gale over Christmas, particularly affecting the Hampshire coast. There was flooding in Conwy. There was loss of life at sea.