2022

Overall, winter 2021-22 was mild: the eighth warmest since 1884, depending on the exact measure, although most of those even milder have been since and including 1988. Some extraordiary summer heatwaves, smashing the British record, and with temperatures over 40 C recorded for the first time in Britiain. The period January-July was the second warmest on record, with every month above temperature, and to August every month has had beneath average rainfall. Summer 2022 was the equal joint hottest on record (with 2018), and was also very dry (the fifth driest since 1836 in England). It was a sunny summer in England, but a dull one in Northern Ireland. It was the third warmests autumn on record (since 1884).


January. The very mild end to December 2021 continued into the start of January. A record high temperature for New Year's Day, with 16.3 ºC recorded at St James's Park in London, beating the previous record from 1916. After this mild start it became colder, with milder interludes, and a windy mild end. The lowest temperature of the month was -8.0 at Topcliffe (North Yorks.) on the 6th. The first ten days were unsettled, but then most of the rest of the month was very anticyclonic. Overall it was milder than average, particularly the further north you went. Frosts were rare in Scotland and common in England, a reverse of the usual pattern. It was a very dry month except in western Scotland, with the UK overall having 50% of the long-term average. It was most noticeably a very sunny month, except in NW Scotland, with 132% of the average, making it the third sunniest in the UK since records began (in 1919).

February. Settled first half, becoming unsettled and often windy in the second half. It was though a very mild month, particularly in the south. It was also very wet, with 152% of the long-term average. It was sunny in the east but less so in the west. It was very stormy midmonth with named Storms Dudley and Eunice. Dudley affected mostly southern Scotland, parts of Wales, and northern England, with winds of 101 mph recorded. Storm Eunice on Friday 18th brought exceptional gales, estimated to be the strongest since the Burns Day Storm of 1990, to the south coast, with a (provisional) new record gust for England of 122 mph recorded at the Needles (IOW). Sadly at least three people died. The highest temperature of the month was 18.2 ªC at Pershore on the 16th, and the lowest -8.1 at Braemar on the 11th. The highest rainfall total in a recording day was 86.6 mm at Seathwate (Cumbria) on the 19-20th.

March. March 2022 had an unsettled first half, with a cold first week and mild second week. It then became very anticyclonic from the 13th on. It turned much colder and unsettled for the last few days. The long dry spell saw a great deal of sunshine, some warm days, but cold nights. Overall the average temperature was well above the long-term CET mean, making it the warmest March since 2017, with average maxima being particularly high. It was a very dry month, with 58% of the long-term average rainfall. It was also an exceptionally sunny month, particularly in western Scotland and Northern Ireland; overall there as 152% of average sunshine, making it the second sunniest March on record for the UK (with only 1929 being sunnier), but for Scotland and Northern Ireland it was the sunniest on record (with totals of 157.9 hours in Wales, 160.1 in Scotland, 168.1 in England, and 192.5 in Northern Ireland). It was particularly dry, sunny, and warm in NW Scotland. The highest temperature of the month was 20.8 ºC at St James's Park in London on the 23rd and Treknow (Cornwall) on the 25th; the lowest was -9.1 at Aboyne (Aberdeenshire) on the 2nd.

April. April 2022 was cool and unsettled at first, becoming warmer and more settled midmonth, and very anticyclonic. Overall the mean temperature was very close to average, although maxima were slightly higher and minima slightly lower. It was a dry month except for northern Scotland and parts of Northern Irealnd, and very dry in eastern England. Overall there was 68% of the expected rainfall. It was a sunny month, particularly in the east, with overall 107% of average. The highest temperature of the month was 23.4 ºC at St James Park (London) on the 1st, and the lowest -8.0 at Tulloch Bridge on the 1st.

May. Something of a mixed bag, with generally a warmer first half, and more unsettled, cooler second half. Overall the month was above average temperature, with minima substantially so. It was wet in the west and dry in the east, overall with 107% of average rainfall. it was a dull month, with only 79% of the long-term expected sunshine. There were a number of notable thunderstorms through the month. The highest temperature was 27.5 ºC on the 17th at Heathrow, and the lowest -1.7 on the 7th at Altnaharra.

June. Quite warm and dry, and sunny in the north. There was a notable if brief early heatwave, with three days of heat peaking with 32.7 ºC at Santon Downham in Suffolk on the 17th, the warmest day of the year so dar. The heat didn't reach Scotland. Overall rainfall was 76% of average; it was particularly dry in the east. Sunshine was 114% of average. The lowest temperature of the month was -1.5 at Altnharra on the 2nd.

July. Overall warm and dry; it was record-breakingly dry in the south and East Anglia, with Odiham in Hampshire recording no rain all month. Overall it was the seventh warmest since 1900, and it was particularly warm in the east.. Overall raindall was at 56%, with only parts of NW Scotland wetter than average. It was generally sunny in the south and east, but dull in the NW, giving an overall average of 103%. After an average start, though with some warm days, particularly in the south, and continuingly mostly dry, an extraordinary heatwave develops in the middle of the month. It reaches 29.1 C at Heathrow on Saturday 16th. On Sunday 17th it reaches 33.0 in Hawarden (Flintshire, North Wales).  On Monday 18th the maximum is 38.1 at Santon Downham in Suffolk (to date the third highest temperature recorded in the UK), while the new record high for Wales is set with 37.1 C at Hawarden, beating the 1990 record. On the night of 18-19th there is a new record high minimum, an unsufferable 26.8 C at Shirburn Model Farm (Oxon.), and also 25.8 C for Kenley (near Croydon, Surrey, with 24.5 at Aberporth, Wales and 21.3 at Nunraw Abbey, East Lothian, both new national records for high minima), beating the previous record of 23.9 set in August 1990. The UK record maximum is broken, along with 40 ºC for the first time, with 40.3 at Coningsby (Lincs.) on Tuesday 19th, with 40.2 at Heathrow, and several other places over 40. Also on the 19th the Scottish record is broken, with 35.1 at Floors Castle (Roxburghshire) and 34.8 at Charterhall (Borders). It then "cools down", with "only" 29.6 at Tibenham Airfield near Norfolk on Wednesday 20th, and then 26.3 at Herstmonceux (Sussex) on the 21st. It was though very dull in Northern Ireland.

August. Hot at CET 18.7 C (+2.9), the warmest since 1997, and the third hottest on record (after 1995) in CET terms, and the fifth warmest in the UK (since 1884). There was another heatwave, in the second week. Anticyclonic first half, unsettled third week. Another dry month, with 54% of average overall, with parts of England and Wales very dry, and it was also a very sunny month, with 128% of average overall, the fourth sunniest since 1919. The highest temperature of the month was 34.9C at Charlwood (Surrey) on the 13th. 146.2 mm of rain fell in the recording fay at Holbeach (Lincs.) on the 16-17th.

September. Overall slightly warmer, wetter, and duller than average, although with wide geographical variations. Generally unsettled, it was quite warm for the first 12 days before becoming cooler, and then cold right at the end. It was relatively dry in NW Scotland and East Anglia, and wet in parts of the SE, east Scotland, and Northern Ireland. Overall rainfall was 111% of average, and sunshine 92%. The highest temperature of the month was 27.7C at Felsham (Suffolk) on the 4th, and the lowest -1.7 at Shap (Cumbria) on the 17th. 100.4 mm of rain fell in the final rain day of the monthat Seathwaite (Cumbria).

October. Mild and unsettled, although with a cooler second week and very mild final ten days, with warm air sucked up from the south. There was generally little frost around. Maximum temperatures were most above average in SE England, and minimum temperatures most above average in central Scotland. (I can vouch for that; see my weather diary pages for my own weather station in East Scotland). The CET was 12.8 C, +2.0 over the 1990-2020 mean, making it the joint fifth warmest on record (since 1659, after 2001, which had an average of 13.2, and 1969, 2005, and 2006; six of the ten warmest Octobers have occurred since 2000). Rainfall was slightly higher than average (115%), although it was very wet in Northern Ireland but relatively dry in the east, where rain is most needed. It was generally a sunny month (114%), particularly in the east and central areas, especially north Norfolk, except for western Scotland. The highest temperature of the month was 22.9C at Kew Gardens in London, unusually right at the end of the month, on the 29th, and the lowest temperature of the month an unremrakable -3.8 at Aboyne (Aberdeenshire) on the 15th. The daily highest rainfall total was 102.6 mm at Honister Pass (Cumbria) on the 4-5th. So far every month in 2022 has been above temperature, and it has been the warmest January-October period in the UK on record. To date, much of East Anglia and the southeast of England have only seen half the expected rainfall for the year so far.

November. Very mild and unsettled, and very wet in places. It was the joint seventh mildest in the CET series, and since 1900 only 1994, 2011, 1938, and 2015 were milder, and the third warmest for the UK overall in records going back to 1884 (only 1994 and 2011 were milder). The month had a very mild first half with S and SW winds bringing warm air from the Azores. A new record high minimum was set for Scotland on the night of 10th-11th, with the temperature falling no lower than 14.6C at both Kinloss and Prestwick.  It was the mildest Armistice Day on record, with 15.9C recorded at Myerscough (Lancs.). The warmest ever day so late in the year, 21.2 C, was recorded at Porthmadog on the 13th (which was also the highest temperature of the month). It was cooler towards the end of the month. It was generally a wet month, particularly in the Western Isles, eastern Scotland, and southern England; UK rainfall was 130% of average  overall, and sunshine 95%, with it being particularly dull in the east. The coldest temperature was -6.0 C at Aviemore on the 30th, and 115.6 mm of rain fell in the rain day ending 9 am on the 11th at Achnagart (Ross & Cromarty). Shoreham (West Sussex) recorded 224 mm of rain for the month (compared with an average of about 90 mm).