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Records tumble as winter tightens its grip

Paul Hudson | 11:09 UK time, Sunday, 28 November 2010

UPDATE AT 10pm on Monday 29th Nov

Bradford Lister park recorded minus 7.5C; the coldest November night since records began in 1908.

Linton on Ouse recorded its coldest November night too with minus 11.2C. Remarkably on November 4th the same station recorded its highest daytime November temperature with 17.6C.

Linton on Ouse also recorded this morning at 9am the deepest November lying snow on record at 15cm.

It's been a remarkable night across our region, and the UK, with records tumbling. I haven't access to the full climate records as I am writing this from home, so I don't know the year in which most of the previous records were set.

But here in Yorkshire, Church Fenton recorded minus 13C. This site previously held the record for the coldest November night on record for Yorkshire as a whole, with minus 11.9C.

Now Topcliffe in North Yorkshire holds that record, having recorded minus 14C last night.

Waddington in Lincolnshire also broke its all time November record with minus 8C.

Data for Waddington and Church Fenton go back to the mid 1940's.

Nationally some very low temperatures have also been recorded overnight, with new records in Scotland at Altnaharra with minus 14.4C and Loch Glascarnoch with minus 12.5C.

In Wales, Trawscoed recorded minus 12.5C, Sennybridge minus 15.6C.

In Shropshire, England, Shawbury recorded minus 13.2C and Newport minus 11.8C.

In Northern Ireland, Aldergrove has recorded minus 9C and that beats the previous November lowest (minus 6.6) back in 1962.

The cold weather will be with us all next week. For Yorkshire and Lincolnshire as a strong easterly wind picks up early next week snow showers will become frequent at times, and could be driven as far west as the Pennines. Severe drifting is expected, especially over the hills in the east.


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  • 1. At 11:37am on 28 Nov 2010, Gadgetfiend wrote:

    Quite a year. I wonder how UK temperatures are shaping up for 2010? After such a cold start, and now a cold end, presumably it's going to be one of the coldest years for some time? If so what a contrast with global temperatures.

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  • 2. At 11:52am on 28 Nov 2010, buythermals wrote:

    '' If so what a contrast with global temperatures''?? You mean the marginally warmer 30 year satellite troposphere data set? Apart from the calibration of some of these satellites being somewhat suspect, 30 years is far too short a time to be pontificating about the future climate. The climate models are a joke. Thet have been consistently wrong so far, there are just too many degrees of freedom in the climate to even come close to a decent model. We do not know about all the different mechanisms that affect the climate and those we do know about, we don't fully understand how they interact. The 'science is settled'? Ask the russian, the chinese and the indian climate scientists. You'll get a different answer.
    Meanwhile, buy thermals!

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  • 3. At 12:21pm on 28 Nov 2010, YorkshireexilesinSpain wrote:

    Living in a mountain village in Andalucia, Spain, we can feel quite cut-off from our native Yorkshire so great to be able to keep a track of the weather and see the wonderful weather photos of the county. Thanks Paul for letting us know about the rain and flooding heading our way. All we get forecast-wise here is the percentage chance of rain in a day which for 100% could mean anything to a few minutes drizzle to continous heavy rain all day. It never stopped raining on Saturday - too wet to put your nose out of the door - it was nethering!!
    What about a White Christmas and the chances of being able to lend at LBA on Boxing Day? Definitely packing the thermals!!

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  • 4. At 12:32pm on 28 Nov 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #1 - Gadgetfiend wrote:
    "Quite a year. I wonder how UK temperatures are shaping up for 2010? After such a cold start, and now a cold end, presumably it's going to be one of the coldest years for some time? If so what a contrast with global temperatures."
    As far as I know, the CET figure has been below normal all year, although recently only marginally. According to the M.O., the provisional figure was 0.12 below normal at November 26th. The 12 month rolling average CET figure was almost exactly normal at the end of October, and with November 2009 being 2.1c ABOVE NORMAL, a normal figure of 6.6c for November would leave the 12 month rolling average at 9.3c, which is 0.15c below normal. At the moment, November is running at 6.3c and a lower figure seems likely, especially since the provisional figures are usually revised downward. A final figure of 6c for November would make the 12 month rolling average about 9.2c. The last time the annual CET was that low was in in 1996, and before that, 1987, with a figure of 9.05c.
    Since last December was 1.5c below normal, it seems likely that the 12 month rolling average will rise in December, and a final figure of around 9.3c for the year seems likely, which would make it the first below normal year since 1996.

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  • 5. At 12:51pm on 28 Nov 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #2 - buythermals
    The M.O. have been working hard to find excuses for the recent decline in the rate of warming, which they now accept is the case, although it is cunningly concealed in the usual "warming continues" propaganda:
    One of the possible reasons for the decline in the rate of warming is given as the "change" (fall) in the level of water vapour in the stratosphere. If that is the case, then the equivalent rise during the 1990's would also account for the increase in the rate global warming during that period, although of course, they don't mention that.
    Clearly, this is is a demonstration of deficiencies in the climate models, in which the prophets of doom place so much faith.

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  • 6. At 1:54pm on 28 Nov 2010, jackk94 wrote:

    it hasn't snowed that much in huddersfield :| do you know if its going to snow around west yorkshire much into next week?

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  • 7. At 2:13pm on 28 Nov 2010, copout wrote:

    The BBC weather site is a joke. At the moment you are showing light snow showers where I live, the snow is coming down very very heavy. As far as I can remember in the last 2 weeks the forecast predictions on the BBC website has been nothing like what it has been in our area. What a waste of money. What can be done to make it a us to the public. I am not the only one fed up of its useless predictions.

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  • 8. At 4:17pm on 28 Nov 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #7 - copout
    I agree about the BBC website forecast.
    How the meteorologists on t.v. can bring themselves to recommend it is beyond me.
    At the moment it is saying that there will be no more sub-zero temperatures where I live on the N.E. England coast, for the next 5 days, which I find surprising. We shall see.
    There is often a discrepancy between the 5 day forecast and the 24 hour forecast. For example, the forecast for Newcastle upon Tyne for Monday says max. 1, min. -2 and a wind speed of 7mph. However, the 24 hour shows -3 and a peak wind of 10mph at 6am. The summary pic shows light snow shower, but the 24 shows heavy snow at 3am. One problem is that the Max. temps are daytime and the Min. temps are are at night, which can produce odd results. I appreciate that it is difficult to summarise a day when the weather is so changeable, but that is the point, i.e. the 5 day summary isn't worth looking at. I can only assume that the people who recommend it on t.v., must never look at it themselves. I wonder whether any any accuracy measurements are ever done on the site?

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  • 9. At 5:36pm on 28 Nov 2010, bill-loft wrote:

    I'm now looking forward to seeing Paul, Harry and Christa all doing their separate (more or less simultaneous) outdoors reports on BBC Look North, like they did in the last winter. They certainly earned their money then.

    Meanwhile, here in Lofthouse no blizzard conditions yet, but it's bad enough.

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  • 10. At 7:46pm on 28 Nov 2010, Mully wrote:

    At last Skipton is a white wonderland. Magical! We have full size army of Snowmen in the garden already - perfect snowball making snow too - the kids are LOVING it (& so are the parents!) These are the heavy, lasting snowfalls like we remember from our own childhoods.
    I am a very amateur weather nerd (or at least my husband regards me as one) - I've told him it's looking like more heavy snow for Skipton tomorrow, what are the chances of me being right and impressing him??!
    Hope it's coming your way too ..that's if you want it to.. Well done Paul for your accurate predictions as National weather forecasters get it wrong once again for our region!

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  • 11. At 8:04pm on 28 Nov 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    Further to my post #8, the BBC website has now got a forecast
    of -4c for tonight, which wasn't there before. This is despite
    the fact that there is no corresponding figure in the 24 hour

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  • 12. At 11:21pm on 28 Nov 2010, jkiller56 wrote:

    Market Weighton E.Yorks -7.5c last night (non standard garden termo.). This is within 2c of lowest recorded last winter which was lowest recorded here in 10 years (-9c). Clear cold and still until mid pm. when cloud and snow arrived again- but also easterly breeze which raised temp above freezing (just) for first time all day. Now clear and plummeting again.We have about 3" of snow.

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  • 13. At 7:30pm on 29 Nov 2010, jkiller56 wrote:

    Market Weighton and Wolds had quite a bit more snow last night. No sign yet of the easterly wind promised, which may raise temps. here a bit. The thing I dread is the anticyclone to the north drifting south. If this happens - temperature wise - you ain't seen nothing yet. Mention of Shawbury, Shropshire in Paul's blog reminds me of December 1981 when this place recorded a sensational minus 25c following heavy snow. Unbelievably this was topped in the same locality the following January by minus 26c - a new English record - under similar conditions. It serves as an illustration of the sort of frost that might occur in clear anticyclonic conditions over thick snow. Lag your pipes!

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  • 14. At 8:58pm on 29 Nov 2010, Julie wrote:

    I'm just looking out of the window at the snow that is coming down here in Laceby (outside Grimsby)and the biggest lightning flash just came out the sky and then followed the thunder. It is very strange to see thiscombinationof weather tonight. Was a storm forecast? I've never seen this happen before. Can you explain why this is please? My kids wondered what was happening. Thanks. Keeping warm.

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  • 15. At 06:17am on 30 Nov 2010, jwren wrote:

    Dear Paul
    As a previous resident of Wharfedale, is it true that you are grandson of Joe? Whether or not, he was an inspiring character and we had many good times sharing a drink ( or - how many!?) in local pubs. Guess that's more or less gone now - drink driving and all. People like Joe and me would just walk a mile or so to enjoy good company. I am now a "refugee" in East Yorkshire, not far from where you are Mayor!!!

    Anyhow is it true - he lived by the Church/falls in Linton near Grassington.

    Hoping to hear from you,


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  • 16. At 12:07pm on 30 Nov 2010, ScudLewis wrote:

    Wow - amazing stuff! The CET for the last week's of Nov 2010 are truly historic. Wonder why this isn't big news. Forget the snow - these temps are incredible for November. It isn't as though we are in winter - this is Autumn.

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  • 17. At 2:29pm on 30 Nov 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #16 - ScudLewis wrote:
    "Wow - amazing stuff! The CET for the last week's of Nov 2010 are truly historic. Wonder why this isn't big news. Forget the snow - these temps are incredible for November. It isn't as though we are in winter - this is Autumn."
    Yes, the provisional figure for the 29th is 5.6c, which is 1c below normal, compared to 2.1c above normal for last November. Due to the fact that provisional figures tend to overstate the temp., it is still possible that this November might be lower than 1993 (4.6c) but perhaps not lower than 1983 (4.1c), which I think would make it the coldest since 1925.

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  • 18. At 4:45pm on 30 Nov 2010, combinedolly wrote:

    Last night in Louth, there was a thunderstorm in a snowstorm. I cannot remember it happening before, is this usual? It was quite a spectacle to see the lighning, hear the thunder and watch the snow swirling. I connect thunder and lightning with hot weather, not cold?? Can you tell us why this "snunderstorm" happened?
    Many thanks

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  • 19. At 6:25pm on 30 Nov 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #18 - combinedolly
    There is a phenomenon called "Thundersnow", which occurs in the winter.
    I am not an expert, but there is some info here on Wikipedia:
    Here in the N.E. of England we have had a few incidences of Thundersnow, with storms coming from the North Sea.
    One thing I hav noticed is that the lightning seems brighter, possibly due to reflection off any snow which is on the ground.

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  • 20. At 11:42pm on 30 Nov 2010, mailmannz wrote:

    Im picking that the only places that will show any warming will be central africa and the arctic. Which strangely are also the two places with the least number of weather stations.

    You know the funny thing is how all those making alarmist statements about Mann Made Global Warming (tm) and talking up the weather models not ONCE EVER said anything about the winters getting colder. In fact, they said the complete opposite, that snow would become a thing of the past.

    BTW, Im looking out my window at several inches of Mann Made Global Warming (tm) on the ground in my garden...oh what I would give for a 4 degree temp increase! :)


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  • 21. At 12:23pm on 01 Dec 2010, Alan Jones wrote:

    I was wondering Paul if this weather is a sign that the global temperatures are starting to reverse, or are the ice caps still melting away and the global warming problem still with us.

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  • 22. At 1:47pm on 01 Dec 2010, John Marshall wrote:

    #21 Alan J. If you look on the internet you will find that Antarctica sea ice is at a record area. The Arctic has recovered from the so called drastic 2007 ice and set to increase. The ARGO oceanic buoy system shows a cooling of the surface waters, at least down to 1000 m. Of course we still get reports from Hadley, NOAA et al that 2010 will be the warmest year on record but this statement was made in early November when it was a little warmer than what is called 'normal'. November will go out on record as the coldest for many years and I do not expect5 2010 to break any heat records, provided that you look at the correct data set.
    And I have to drive from the Lincolnshire Wolds to the Shuttle on Monday so come on Paul I want some heat to melt this stuff to clear the roads.

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  • 23. At 2:50pm on 01 Dec 2010, bandythebane wrote:

    It is easy to see why the true believers are so keen to rush out statements about 2010 being "the warmest year ever"

    The AMSR - E measurement of aerage global sea temperatures were high earlier this year, reflecting the strong El Nino. Since around July they have been falling like a stone and the air temperatures which follow with a few months lag are now starting to do likewise.

    The 2010 average figure right now is slightly lower but not statistically different from 1998. By the time November and December figures are in I would expect that 2010 will turn out to be (who knows) somewhere between the 2nd and 4th warmest since 1998. Not all that impressive heh!

    Better to go for the propaganda of a (probably false)projection than to admit a rather uninspiring truth.

    Also let us not forget that if the models the IPCC relies on were right EVERY year since 1998 would be warmer than 1998.

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  • 24. At 3:06pm on 01 Dec 2010, Neil Booth wrote:

    I have been watching a BBC program called Wonders of the solar system and part 1 was all about the sun. The professor mentioned about the sun's rhythm or seasons between high and low solar activity (Sun spots). So i looked further on the internet and found a site with a graph showing the ups and downs of the amount of the sun spot count since the 1700's till today then i found a website of The history of British winters and i saw that when there was a low sun spot count we had a really bad winters. And guess what At the moment there aren't many sun spots (BAD WINTER)

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  • 25. At 5:40pm on 01 Dec 2010, bandythebane wrote:

    I've just come across a quote from David Viner, a senior research scientist at CRU who was recently pontificating at Cancun.

    Ten years ago in 2000 he was quoted as saying "within a few years winter snowfall" (in the UK) will become "a rare and exciting event. Children just aren't going to know what snow is"

    Why is anyone listening to a man on record as talking such twaddle and being so far wrong?

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  • 26. At 5:54pm on 01 Dec 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #25 - bandythebane wrote:
    "I've just come across a quote from David Viner, a senior research scientist at CRU who was recently pontificating at Cancun.
    Ten years ago in 2000 he was quoted as saying "within a few years winter snowfall" (in the UK) will become "a rare and exciting event. Children just aren't going to know what snow is""

    I suppose he might argue that some of what he said is true. After all, everyone is getting excited about the amount of snow we are having, because of it's recent rarity. To be fair, we haven't had much snow since 2000, up until recently. However, the fallacy in his statement is the assumption that snow was common in the past, which it wasn't. The implication of what he said was that snow would be less frequent and we may have to wait 100 years (by which time we will all be dead), to find out if he was correct. The children of today will be under the impression that snow is a common and normal event in winter.

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  • 27. At 5:58pm on 01 Dec 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #24 - Neil Booth
    I have done some comparison between winter sunspot numbers and winter temperatures and there seems to be only a weak correlation between low sunspot numbers and cold winters. Cold winters seem almost equally likely in periods of high sunspot numbers and vice versa. While last winter and those of 1995/6 and 1996/7, 1962/63 coincided with low sunspot numbers, the relatively cold winter of 1978/79 occurred during a period of high sunspot numbers and the "warm" winters of 1994/95 and 1974/75 occurred during periods of low sunspot numbers. Of course there could be other factors and offset time periods involved, which I haven't taken into account.

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  • 28. At 7:00pm on 01 Dec 2010, muflury123 wrote:

    I love geography and i love this time as the weather changes alot. But will this cold front happen again in winter as in Jan Feb time we get some snow but will this happen again with the same snow and frezzing weather????

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  • 29. At 01:51am on 02 Dec 2010, Kevin wrote:

    First of all I wonder why I am reading your blog at 01.50, although I welcome your thoughts! I find the extreme cold weather at this time of the year interesting in that the birds seem to disappear only to return when the weather warms up slightly. I cannot believe that they go far so have always wondered where they do actually go!

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  • 30. At 08:01am on 02 Dec 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #29 - Kevin
    I too have noticed that the number of birds visiting my garden has fallen over the last few days, after an initial surge. Maybe they just don't like the bird food I am putting out, but I suspect that unfortunately, many of them may have died.

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  • 31. At 08:07am on 02 Dec 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    Still waiting for the final November CET figure, which is still stuck at 5.6c (1c below normal) for the 29th. Actually the real figure, based on official daily figures to the 29th is only 5.1c, but since the official daily figures have also been updated to the 29th I can't calculate the official figure for the end of the month. No figures for December yet either. Maybe all of the staff are off work due to the weather!

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  • 32. At 2:35pm on 02 Dec 2010, Neil Booth wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 33. At 4:08pm on 02 Dec 2010, Neil Booth wrote:

    #27 QuaesoVeritas

    In 2009 there were 260 spotless days and then there was a bad winter 09/10, this year there has been 45 spotless days and the winter is bad. And looking at the sun spot graph through the years the mid 90,s and 80's late 70's and 1963 and going way back to the 1800's when the Thames froze over, 90% of the bad winters follow a low sun spot year

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  • 34. At 8:49pm on 02 Dec 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #33 - Neil Booth
    Hmm, I was looking at the sunspot number figures for the actual winters, not spotless days in the year, so I can't on that aspect of it.
    It is true that 1804 and 1815 had low winte sunspot numbers, but the coldest annual CET years were 1794 and 1813, with other years being "normal" for the time. The winter of 1813/14 seems to have been the coldest but the winters with the lowest sunspot numbers were 1809/10 and 1810/11, so why wern't they the coldest winters?

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  • 35. At 9:01pm on 02 Dec 2010, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    The official CET figure for November was 5.2c, which is 1.4c below normal and the coldest November since 1993 (4.6c). Because this is 3.5c lower than last November, the rolling 12 month average CET has fallen to about 9.15c, compared to the annual normal figure of 9.45c. This is the first time the rolling 12 month mean CET has fallen below normal since February 1997.

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  • 36. At 2:36pm on 03 Dec 2010, Neil Booth wrote:

    #34 QuaesoVeritas

    One website i have been looking at is www.spaceweather.com and has a link to the historical yearly sunspot counts since 1750 with all the peaks and troughs and reading through the British winter history on www.netweather.tv/index.cgi?action=other;type=winthist;sess= most of the bad severe winters seem to fall in spells of low sunspot counts and 1811 is one year when the Thames froze ! So must have been pretty cold

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