After a mild winter 1957 saw the warmest March on record. Quite a good dry, warm spring and June, and a notable severe November storm: otherwise an undistinguished year.
January. The month started cold with some snow, but it was mostly a mild, westerly month, but anticyclonic from the 10-20th, with a pressure high of 1051 mbars recorded at Benbecula (Western Isles) on the 16th. It was a stormy month at times. It was quite dry and sunny in the east and Midlands, but wet in the west. A cold northerly outbreak on the 20th led to some heavy snowfalls, particularly in Northern Ireland. Stormy end: a gust of 112.7 mph on Tiree on the 31st. In some places the pressure fell more than 15 mbar in 3 hours as an intense depression passed by.
February. Wet in SE England, but dry in NW Scotland.
March. The warmest March overall (9.2) of the twentieth century, with mostly S or SW winds. The month started quietly, with cold foggy mornings and warm sunny afternoons. It then turned more unsettled. Then, in an exceptional mild spell, the Fohn effect (whereby winds flowing over hills or mountains lead to warming on the far side) led to a maximum of 23.3 C at Haydon Bridge (Northumberland) on the 12th, 22.2C at Elgin that day, equal hottest March reading for Scotland until 2012, and and 22.8C at Aber on the 11th. Even, Cape Wrath managed 20.6C on the 12th, which is a real achievement! 21C was recorded at Peebles on the 13th. The rest of the month was more unsettled but still warm. It was dry in the SE but wet in west.
April. Warm and very dry: there was no rain at all in Ross-on-Wye all month. On the 18th, a cold NE gale gave a gust of 97 mph at Stornoway.
May. A cool but sunny month, and dry in the east. Light snow and sleet were reported as falling in the southeast on the 5th and 6th. Most of the rain in the month fell in a changeable period between the 7th and 20th.
June. One of the sunniest and warmest on record, and quite dry. Over 15 hours of sunshine were recorded at Manchester Airport every day from the 14th to the 21st, and 15 hours of sunshine were recorded widely across England on the 17th. There was a notable thunderstorm on the 8th in Cornwall: 203 mm of rain falling at Camelford led to flooding, with 140 mm of it in two and a half hours, with about half of that in just one hour. There were hail-drifts up to 2 feet deep. Bridges were destroyed. It was very warm over much of the UK from the 12th-20th. However, some violent thunderstorms affected the southwest: Teignmouth endured flooding on the 18th. There was a notable heatwave at the end of the month, carrying on to the 7 July. The equal record high for June, 35.6C, was set on the 29th in London (Camden Square) - in fact it was probably recorded at 96F, which is 35.55, so coooler. At Kew, the temperature reached 27C (80F) for ten days, and then on the last three days of the month, 32C (90F) was recorded at a number of locations across the SE. However, the east coast was considerably cooler. Sandown (IOW) had 345 hours of sunshine, and over 300 hours was recorded across many sites in England. With an average of 265 hours across England and Wales it was the sunniest month on record until 2020.
July. On the 3rd Plymouth had 60mm of rain in one hour, with flooding and lightning damage. The south-east was badly affected by storms; hail damage to fruit in Kent. Serious flooding in Evesham and Rhyl on the 4th. The fine weather and hot spell across most of the country ended on the 7th, and westerlies dominated the rest of the summer. On the 12th, the River Wharfe at Otley (West Yorks) rose four feet in a few minutes following a thunderstorm. Andover was flooded twice this month. On the 26th, the Royal Welsh Show at Aberystwyth was flooded to three feet. A dull month in Yorkshire after a warm and sunny first few days.
August. There were many heavy rainfalls, particularly on the Bank Holiday Monday (5th). 105mm of rain in 90 minutes at Hereford, with damaging hail and strong winds. That night 152mm fell in two storms at Rodsley (Derbyshire), leading to flooding across a wide area. Severe flooding in Wales. The second week was very unsettled as a series of depressions crossed the country. Heavy rainfall led to many landslides in north Wales on the 10th - the railway near Bangor was blocked for 18 hours after 98mm of rain; 135mm of rain in just over two hours at Llansadrwn on Anglesey. There was more flooding in Derbyshire on the 11th. The River Severn was 10' over normal at Shrewsbury on the 12th. Flooding in London on the 12th-13th, particularly around Wandsworth. 99mm of rain at Hampton (Middlesex). At Bognor and Ventnor the highest temperature of the month was just 22C.
September. Very wet and unsettled. It was particularly wet in the Midlands. A dull month in places, but sunny in parts of Devon, Yorkshire, and southern Scotland.
October. A mild but dull month. Dry in the south and east and wet in the west. Relatively dry first half, more unsettled second half.
November. A wet and windy start. There was a notable gale on the 3-4th. The depression that caused it had a central pressure of 962 mbar. It arrived at Devon around midnight and tracked NE. 46 mm of rain at Tilbury. 13 mm of rain in 7 minutes at Dudley, leading to widespread flooding on the Midlands. It fell as snow on the Pennines. The gale was at its most severe across the SE during the early hours. Many houses in a new housing estate at Hatfield (Herts.) lost their roofs. Gust of 103.6 mph at West Raynham (Norfolk) during the night, and 92 mph at Dover. Then storm caused a great deal of structural damage. Another deep depression brought more gales and rain on the 5th. After this stormy start, it became quiet and anticyclonic everywhere. It was a dry month everywhere, particularly in southern Scotland and Lancashire.
December. A major smog led to the deaths of hundreds of people in London.