Weather Report with Phil Thomas

Cold, wet and miserable May

Posted on May 28 2015 at 3:34:54 0 comments

Wet picnickers

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

As we went to press, May had been a wet and cold month. Rainfall of 57mm had already equalled the entire month’s average.

Daytime temperature levels were quite low at an average of only 14.5C, nearly 2C below what we would expect for a “normal” May.

There had been five ground frosts already, so not a good month for putting out the bedding plants!

May 2015 (to the 18th)
Mean Max   14.5C 1.8 below average
Mean Min   6.8C   0.1 above average
Mean       10.6C   0.9 below average
Rainfall     57mm   103% of average
Sunshine 73.6 hours 49% of average

In contrast, April had been a very dry month with only 18.9mm of rainfall, which is only 28% of the local mean. So April was one of the driest for some time. There were only two drier Aprils in the past 30 years locally.

It was a bright and sunny month with 194.7 hours of sunshine, well above the local mean at 165%. Temperatures were also higher, at 1C above the mean.

April 2015
Mean Max   14.6C   1.8 above average
Mean Min   3.8C   0.2 above average
Mean       9.2C   1.0 above average
Rainfall   18.9mm   29% of average
Sunshine 194.7hrs 165% of average

With the dry April now a distant memory, the blocking anticyclone is further south allowing a more mobile Atlantic airstream to return to its normal position. This leads to traditional British weather – a mixture of all seasons in one day.

In the weather press there is a lot of talk about “El Niño”, which is basically a change and warming of the Pacific Ocean currents which has a knock-on effect around the globe.

There seems to be a lot of debate on how it will affect us – last time there was a slight warming of our summers, but colder winters. I think any changes will somehow not affect this summer, which has no definite pattern showing yet.

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Above: Typical May weather at the Alvechurch Picnic in the Park. Pic/Keith Woolford