Overall a very mild winter. The winter of 2015-16 just failed to beat the winter of 1868-69 to become the mildest on record (since 1659). Tt was the last few days of February, with a late cold snap, that let it down. The first half of the year was unsettled and wet, the second half largely anticyclonic and dry, particularly in the south. Only April and November were cooler than average. The hottest day of the year though occurred in September, for the first time since 1962.


January. Mild and wet. The first week was extremely unsettled leading to extraordinarily high rainfall totals in east Scotland, with widespread severe flooding. The second week was much colder, with an incursion of Arctic air. It was then mostly unsettled and mild. The highest temperature of the month was 16.5C at Achnagart (Highland) on the 24th, and the lowest temperature was -12.4C at Kinbrace on the morning of the 19th. The rainfall total was 152% of average, making it the fourth wettest January on record; it was the second wettest calendar month of all in east Scotland - just beaten by December 2014. 103.8 mm of rain fell at Spittal of Glenmick (Aberdeenshire) on the 3rd. It was a dull month in all but the far south (80% of average).

February. An unsettled first half but turning colder in the second half. Overall it was about average temperature; it was warmer than usual in the south, but colder than average in Northern Ireland and Scotland. The lowest temperature of the month is -14.1C at Braemar early on the 14th, the lowest temperature in the UK since February 2012. The highest temperature of the month was 16.0 at Exeter on the 21st. It was a wet month (129% of average), being particularly wet in the west but drier in the east. It was a sunny month, with 122% of expected sunshine.

March. Low pressure at the start and end of the month sandwiching a ten-day anticyclonic spell from the 13th to the 23rd. The named Storm Katie brought strong winds to the south on the 28th. Overall temperatures were close to average, although it was colder in the south and more mild in the north. Rainfall was close to average (91%), although it was wetter in the east and drier in the north. It was sunnier than average, with 115% of the long-term average, particularly in the west. The highest temperature of the month was 18.7C at Braemar on the 17th, and the lowest -8.1C at Altnaharra on the 10th. The snow cover at Malham Tarn (North Yorkshire) reached 17 cm on the morning of the 4th.

April The first ten days or so were unsettled; the rest of the month was cold and quite sunny. There was a notable heavy snowfall in the north on the 29-30th. The month was 0.9C beneath the CET average; it was also wetter on average (112%), particularly in the east. It was slightly sunnier than average. The highest temperature of the month was 20.3C at Porthmadog in Gwent on the 21st, and the lowest -5.6C at Kinbrace in Sutherland on the 28th. The greatest snow depth was 9 cm at Crombie Country Park in good old Angus on the 29th.

May. After an unsettled start the rest of the month was largely anticyclonic, with winds generally from the easterly direction, making it particularly warm and sunny in the west, and cooler and cloudier in the east. There was a more unsettled spell midmonth. It was warmer than average, with near average rainfall (92%). Overall sunshine was 115% of average. The highest temperature of the month was 27.7C at Plockton (Ross and Cromarty) on the 9th, and the lowest -5.7C at Tulloch Bridge (Invernessshire) on the 14th.

June Wet, dull, and quite warm. The first half was more settled and relatively warm. The night of the 22-23 June saw severe thunderstorms with flooding in the SE, particularly in the London area. Farnborough recorded 45.0 mm overnight. The end of the month was cool and unsettled. The average temperature was brought up by some mild nights; the highest temperature of the month was only 27.8C, Porthmadog. Rainfall overall was 144% (95 mm), with a lot of it occurring towards the end of the month. It was particularly wet in the east. There was only 74% of sunshine (137 hours), although Anglesey and some of the western islands recorded above average: Shetland saw 200 hours.

July. Slightly warmer than average overall. Unsettled first half, then with a fine spell, and a hot spell from the 18th to 29th, before turning thundery, the month finishing unsettled. Rainfall was about average overall (104%) bit better in the NW and drier in the SE, and very dry in the south. It was quite a dull month, with 92% of average sunshine. The highest temperature of the month was 33.5C at Brize Norton (Oxon), and 33.9C at Jersey Airport on the 19th. 97.9 mm of rain fell at Nunraw Abbey (East Lotion) on the 20th.

August. A warm month - at 17.0C, the warmest since 2004 in the CET series. It was particularly warm in the east. The highest temperature of the month (and year) was 34.1C at Faversham in Kent on the 24t; the 10th was a cold night, with -1.5C at Kindrogan (Perthshire). The month was changeable in the first half, and warmer and more settled in the second. Rainfalls was very close to the long-term average, although it was wet in parts of the north. It was quite a sunny month, with 110% of average.

September. An extraordinary month. Overall very warm, with a CET of 14.6, making it the second equal warmest September from 1910. The first five days were unsettled, and then southerly winds brought hot humid air to the south. 29.3C was recorded at Gravesend on the 7th. It was slightly cooler from the 8th to the 12th, and then 34.4C was recorded at Gravesend on Tuesday 13th, a real record breaker, in many ways: it is the hottest day of the year; it is remarkably late (you have to go back to 1926 for one later); it is the first time 90F (32.3) is exceeded in September since 1949; it was the first time since 1962 that the warmest day of the year in Britain was in September; and it was the hottest September day since 1911. There was also some very heavy thunderstorms to the north and west: Prestbury in Cheshire saw 32.4mm of rain in just one hour; Manchester City's Champions League clash with Borussia Monchengladbach had to be postponed. There were some high minima that night, with 20.8C recorded at locations in Kent. The next day was warm too, with Marham reaching 31.1C. The second half of the month was much more changeable. Rainfall was about average, but it was dry in the east and wetter in the west. Sunshine was close to average.

October. A very anticyclonic month, with high pressure centred over Scandinavia, so generally a very easterly month. The end of the month was very mild. Overall very slightly warmer than the long-term average, but very dry, with 38% of the average rainfall. It was wettest in places most affected by showers from the east. It was sunnier than average (117%), particularly in the west; northern Scotland recorded its sunniest October since records began (only in 1929). The highest temperature of the month was 22.2C at Trawscoed (Dyfed) on the 31st, and the lowest -5.0C at Tulloch Bridge (Invernessshire) on the 25th.

November. Unsettled midmonth in the south, but settled with cold spells at the end of the month, and more generally in the north. It was overall colder than average (5.6C CET), particularly with cold nights. Rainfall overall was 89% of average, drier in the north and west. It was a sunny month, particularly in NW Scotland, but not for poor Cornwall. The highest temperature of the month was 19.0C at Cardinham (Cornwall) on the 1st, and the lowest -12.1C at Braemar on the 21st. Named Storm Angus brought flooding ti the southwest midmonth.

December. Overall very mild, the eighth mildest since 1910. The highest temperature was 17.0C at Hawarden (Flintshire) on the 7th, and the lowest was -11.0 at Cromdale (Moray) on the 5th. The month had a cold anticyclonic start with frost. Then from the 5th mostly southerly winds brought very mild weather, with occasional rain and a great deal of fog, thick enough to interfere with transport. There was a maximum of 16.2°C at Peatlands (County Armagh) on the 7th, which was a new record high for Northern Ireland in December. It was then unsettled, with a very mild Christmas Day, record-breaking in places. It was also very stormy in places on the 25th and 26th. It was more settled and colder at the end of the month. It was a very dry month, with just 69% of the long-term average, and particularly dry in the SE. Sunshine was about average, although it was quite sunny in eastern and central England. 109.6 mm of rain fell at Kinlochewe (Wester Ross) on the 30-31st.

2016