Remember, remember, it's often wet in November!

  • Scenes like this will be commonplace in the coming few days. Photo: Andrew Milligan/PA Archive/Press Association Images

    Zoo animals were given a seasonal treat this week. Photo: Joe Giddens/PA Wire/Press Association Images

    Will the weather play ball in the first week of November? Photo: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire/Press Association Images

  • Remember, remember, it's often wet in November!
    26.10.2013 14:54

    With the current media attention focused on Monday’s approaching storm, little has been mentioned on what’s to come for the rest of the half term week and beyond. This includes the weather prospects for those heading to the streets on Halloween this Thursday to play ‘trick or treat’ and, of course, the approach of one of Britain’s statistically wettest months: November.

    On average, November is the third wettest month in the UK, with 121mm (4.8 inches) only closely beaten by October and January.

    Despite a fairly quiet few autumns, this season is not only characterised by its ‘mists and mellow fruitfulness’ but also by significant wind and rain events. This is due to a number of factors. The seas reach their annual peak in temperature during the first part of autumn and this helps low pressure systems to deepen and produce copious amounts of precipitation. Also, the jet stream, which often sits to the north of the UK during the summer months, tends to slide southwards around this time of year. This high-altitude ‘ribbon’ of fast-flowing air thereby encourages Atlantic storms to reach our shores. The oceans also play a key role in the formation of showers in the autumn months. This is because the land is rapidly cooling as we head towards winter, whereas the sea surface remains comparatively warm, giving rise to strong convection, which manifests in the formation of showers. These showers often bring the majority of their precipitation to windward coasts, however strong winds can bring these much further inland.

    For those heading outside for Halloween, a band of rain is expected to slide south-eastwards across the UK, followed by drier spells and a scattering of showers from the north-west, but hopefully this won’t dampen too many spirits.

    The unsettled weather that we are currently experiencing here in the UK is not uncommon for this time of year and current forecast models are suggesting that the changeable weather is set to continue as October draws to a close.

    Furthermore, with Bonfire Night just over a week away, many will also be wondering how the weather is likely to affect any related outdoor events. Unfortunately, the current rapidly-changing weather makes it very difficult to pin-point when are where any rain will fall, although trends are hinting that mild, cyclonic conditions are set to prevail bringing relatively mild temperatures as well as intermittent spells of rain and further brisk winds. No sign of any cold snaps just yet, so pack away your sledge and winter woollies and keep hold of that umbrella!

    By: John Lee