April Weather Review

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  • Sunrise over St. Mary's Lighthouse in Whitley Bay, Tyne & Wear on 16 April (Owen Humphreys/PA)

    Tulips under clear blue skies in Edinburgh on 20 April (David Cheskin/PA)

    A carpet of bluebells at Bolton Percy, North Yorkshire on 25 April (John Giles/PA)

  • April Weather Review
    30.04.2014 16:12

     

    The main features of the month were:

    ·        Warmest April since 2011

    ·        Driest only since last year

    ·        Long dry and sunny spell 8th to 19th

    The pressure pattern for April 2014 was rather unusual, with a south to southeasterly anomalous flow over all parts of the British Isles. Pressure ranged from near normal in Shetland to 3 mbar below normal in western Ireland.

    Mean maximum temperature during April ranged from 16.6°C at  St James's Park (London) to 8.8°C at Fair Isle (between Orkney and Shetland), while mean minimum temperature varied between 8.9°C at St Mary's (Isles of Scilly) and 2.7°C at Braemar (Aberdeenshire).  Both mean maxima and mean minima where between 1.0 and 2.5 degC in all parts of the country.  The Central England Temperature (CET) of 10.3°C was 1.8 degC above the mean for 1981-2010; this was the warmest April only since the record-breaking one of 2011, but in the last 100 years only two Aprils were warmer, two had the same mean temperature, while 96 were colder.

    The highest maximum at a standard site (i.e excluding rooftop and mountain sites) in the UK was 22.0°C recorded at Aviemore (Inverness-shire) on the 28th though the 21.0°C at Frittenden (Kent) on the 2nd was equally noteworthy, while the lowest minimum was minus 5.2°C at Aboyne (Aberdeenshire) on the 20th. The lowest daytime maximum was 5.2°C at Spadeadam Forest (Cumbria) on the 2nd, while the warmest night was that of the 5th/6th with a minimum of 12.9°C at Swanscombe Marsh (Kent).

    Rainfall averaged over England and Wales (including an estimated figure for the 30th) during April was 61mm which is 94 per cent of the average for the standard reference period 1981-2010; this was the lowest April rainfall only since last year, but 44 Aprils in the last 100 years have been drier. The equivalent figures for Scotland were 53mm and 95 per cent of the normal amount, and for Northern Ireland 28mm and 55 per cent.  Monthly totals at routinely-available sites ranged from 202mm at Cluanie Inn (Wester Ross) and the rather low figure of 12mm at Wattisham (Suffolk). The heaviest daily fall was 41mm on the 5th at Capel Curig (Caernarfon).

    Sunshine averaged over England and Wales (including an estimated figure for the 30th) during April was 160 hours which is 96 per cent of the 1981-2010 mean, making this the dullest April since 2012. In the last 100 years 53 Aprils were sunnier and 47 were duller. The equivalent figures for Scotland were 156 hours and 105 per cent, and for Northern Ireland 182 hours and 113 per cent.  Largest total in the UK was 217 hours at St Helier (Jersey),  and the smallest was 103 hours at Lerwick (Shetland).

    Strongest winds during April occurred on the 12th with gusts to 59 knots at Fair Isle (between Orkney and Shetland).

    Regional Breakdown

    Difference from the average (1981-2010)

    Mean Max

    (deg C)

    Mean Min

    (deg C)

    Rainfall

    (per cent)

    Sunshine

    (per cent)

     

     

     

     

     

    Scotland (Highlands and Islands)

    +1.0

    +1.3

    94

    113

     

     

     

     

     

    Scotland - Central Belt and east coast

    +1.0

    +2.1

    96

    97

     

     

     

     

     

    Northeast England

    +1.6

    +1.9

    80

    101

     

     

     

     

     

    East Anglia

    +2.4

    +2.1

    55

    105

     

     

     

     

     

    Midlands

    +2.1

    +1.8

    76

    100

     

     

     

     

     

    Southeast England

    +2.3

    +2.2

    109

    107

     

     

     

     

     

    Northwest England and North Wales

    +1.5

    +2.1

    72

    96

     

     

     

     

     

    Southwest England and South Wales

    +1.3

    +1.4

    118

    93

     

     

     

     

     

    Northern Ireland

    +1.6

    +1.4

    55

    113

     

     

     

     

     

    IrishRepublic

    +1.2

    +1.6

    76

    100

     

     

     

     

     

    Philip Eden 140430