1966

We won the World Cup, but the summer was distinctly poor (except on the day of the final, of course, and except in my childhood memory). Also the record rainfall for December was set this year.


January. Cold, dry, and dull. It was -19C on the morning of the 19th at Elmstone in Kent, with a maximum later that day of only -4C. The sea froze over at Pegwell Bay. Much snow in the east 14-22nd. An ice storm affected the south on the 20th as a depression hit the cold polar continental air brought in on the easterlies.

February. Some cold weather in Scotland mid-month, with -20C at Balmoral on the 15th, and -17C at Turnhouse (near Edinburgh). At the same time, places in southern England were frost-free. It was very mld towards the end of the month, with sunshine and a southerly wind. Overall a very mild month in the CET series.

March. A mild start, but there was a series of cold spells starting on the 11th, with snow showers, and more snow in the final week. Dry overall.

April. Cold, dull, and wet. Very wet in southwest England, where it was one of the wettest Aprils of the century: there was about three times the average rainfall. There was a notable snowfall in some places in the north on the 1st; parts of Lancashire saw at least six inches, and some sites might have had a foot of snow. The snow fell as a shallow low moved across the Midlands on the 1st-2nd. There was a significant late snowfall in the south on the 14-15th, which was also a cold day in an northeasterly wind. Brighton had a couple of inches of snow; snow cover was 15 cm deep on the high ground from Kent to Hampshire. In some places it snowed continuously for 48 hours. It was warm around Easter (10th). It was dull and cold until the the 27th.

May. Very warm and sunny at the start (27C in the SE on the 2nd), but the rest of the month was changeable westerlies.

June. Warm but wet. It was particularly wet in the north, and it was very dull in Scotland (where it was the dullest since records began) and Northern Ireland. June was the warmest month of the summer according to the CET, and indeed the warmest of any month from September 1964 until July 1967. Those terrible sixties summers ...

July. The highest temperature of the month was 29C in Perth on the 21st, as cold easterlies circulating around low pressure affected much of the SE of England.

August. ... and this was the wettest August Bank Holiday on record (up to this point): 50mm of rain at Winchester, and 105 mm at Wroxhall (Warks.) - although the preceding Saturday and Sunday were warm and sunny.

September. A very average month.

October. 265 mm of rain for the month at Ramsgate. A tornado caused widespread and serious damage at Headington, in NW Oxford, on the 16th. Prolonged heavy rain in South Wales contributed to the Aberfan disaster on the 21st.

November. Generally cold. It was briefly warm in the SE around the 7th, when 17C was reached at Southend. Around the 17th there was a meteor storm, corresponding to a peak in the Leonids cycle.

December. It was a cold but sunny Christmas Day. The record daily rainfall for the month of 199.1mm was set at Dalness in the Highlands on the 17th. The month started with an intense depression on the 1st; pressure was as low as 944 mb near the Mull of Galloway.