Archive for the ‘ Midland Climate details ’ Category

Alvechurch, Worcestershire Weather

Posted Wednesday, 30 November, 2011 at 10:29 pm

Like most people I wake up and look out of my bedroom window and take a glance at what the weather is like.  This determines what I will wear and often will determine the tasks I can undertake during the day.  Surveys of gardens just can not take place when it is pouring with rain.  I also out of curiosity like to read details about the weather in my local area that is published in my local village magazine, aptly called ‘The Village Magazine’  http://www.villageonline.co.uk .  The Alvechurch weather site has up to date information that can be interesting to follow and the web cams have been recently improved allowing me to see whats going on even without having to draw back the curtains.  To have a look at this site follow this link

http://www.alvechurchweather.metsite.com

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Midlands Rainfall

Posted at 10:10 pm

Midlands Rainfall

Rainfall is caused by the condensation of the water in air that is being lifted and cooled below its dew point. Rainfall tends to be associated with Atlantic depressions or with convection. The Atlantic Lows are more vigorous in autumn and winter and bring most of the rain that falls in these seasons. In summer, convection caused by solar surface heating sometimes forms shower clouds and a large proportion of rain falls from showers and thunderstorms then.

A further factor that greatly affects the rainfall distribution is altitude. Moist air that is forced to ascend hills may be cooled below the dew point to produce cloud and rain. A map of average annual rainfall looks similar to a topographic map. However, because most rainfall arrives from the west with Atlantic depressions, much of the West Midlands lies in the ‘rain shadow’ of the Welsh mountains. This makes the region relatively dry, with the effect enhanced locally by the Severn and Wye valleys.

The wettest areas in the Midlands, with an average of over 800 mm per year, are along the Welsh border, in the Cotswolds and, also in the Peak District.  Those locations with a higher altitude record rainfall exceeding 1000 mm.

Sheltered areas of the South and East Midlands are the driest with less than 600 mm per year.  These areas incorporate parts of Northamptonshire, the lower Trent valley and the Avon valley.

Rainfall is generally well-distributed through the year, but the wettest month varies across the region. In the wetter upland areas of the north and west, there is a pronounced winter maximum when the Atlantic depressions are at their most vigorous. In contrast, the East and South Midlands tend to have a more even distribution through the year, with summer amounts there associated with showery, convective rainfall. The graph below shows the rainfall recorded at Pershore college which is the closest recording station to my studio.

Over much of the Midlands, the number of days with rainfall totals of 1 mm or more (‘wet days’) tends to follow a pattern similar to the monthly rainfall totals. In the higher parts of the west and north in winter (December – February), 40 to 45 days is the norm but this decreases to near 30 days in summer (June – August). In the drier east and south, 30 to 35 days in winter and 20 to 25 days in summer are typical. This seasonal change reflects the tendency for summer rainfall to occur over shorter periods because of more convective activity and less frontal rainfall.

Periods of prolonged rainfall can lead to widespread flooding in winter and early spring when the ground has reached saturation levels.   . The Severn valley is particularly prone, since it drains extensive upland areas in mid-Wales. At Easter 1998 a stationary band of heavy rain that stretched across the Midlands from Worcester to Peterborough resulted in floods in which 5 people died and 1000′s were evacuated from their homes. Late October and early November 2000 also saw severe flooding, particularly in areas bordering the Rivers Severn and Trent, following an exceptionally wet autumn with over twice the normal rainfall. On 20 July 2007, up to 18 hours of rainfall resulted in many places in the south Midlands receiving their highest daily rainfall on record. Many rivers burst their banks, including the lower Severn, upper Thames and their tributaries. Thousands of homes and businesses were flooded and there was severe road and rail transport disruption across a wide area. Since then the government has responded to the problems this can cause when large volumes of water enter storm drains.  I have provided some additional information relating to planning requirements for front drives on my web site. http://www.external-designs.co.uk/blog/technical-advice/does-your-drive-need-planning-permission/does-your-drive-need-planning-permission.html

High intensity rainfall is often associated with summer showers and thunderstorms, rates of 100 mm/hr or more being possible for short periods. A notable example that affected Birmingham was the storm of 14 July 1982, with about 35 mm falling in 20 minutes and peak intensities of over 250 mm/hour at Edgbaston, causing extensive flooding. In another storm on 24 July 1994, also in Birmingham, about 21 mm fell in less than 1 hour and 15 mm diameter hailstones fell.

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/weather/uk

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Midlands Sunshine

Posted at 10:05 pm

Midlands Sunshine

The number of hours of bright sunshine is controlled by the length of day and by cloudiness. The day is shortest in December and longest in June and so in general December is the dullest month and June or July the sunniest.

The amount of sunshine decreases with increasing altitude, increasing latitude and distance from the coast .  Average annual sunshine durations over the Midlands range from less than 1350 hours in the higher northern and western fringes to about 1500 hours near the southern boundary. The tendency for cloud to develop over inland areas in summer does lead to lower sunshine averages than coastal sites.

The graphs show the average monthly sunshine totals for Brize Norton and Shawbury, together with the highest and lowest totals recorded in the stated periods.

The highest known monthly sunshine totals in the region are 314.7 hrs at Brize Norton and 309.6 hours at Ross-On-Wye in July 2006 and 308.5 hours at Cheltenham in June 1957. In the dullest winter months, less than 20 hours have been recorded.

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/weather/uk

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Midlands Temperatures

Posted at 10:01 pm

Midlands Temperatures

January is the coldest month, with mean daily minimum temperatures varying from just below 0 °C to about 1.5 °C. The higher values occur in the lower Severn valley and are due to the incursion of milder maritime air via the Bristol Channel. Cold air drainage into the river valleys results in large-scale frost hollows, with the Severn, Wye and Avon valleys enhancing the general frostiness of the western half of the Midlands. With snow cover, some remarkably low temperatures have been recorded, such as -25.2 °C at Shawbury, Shropshire on 13 December 1981 and -26.1 °C at Newport, Shropshire on 10 January 1982. This value at Newport is the lowest ever recorded in England.

July is the warmest month, with mean daily maximum temperatures approaching 22 °C in the south and east Midlands. The highest July mean daily maxima occur in the London area (22.5 °C) whilst the lowest occur in the Shetlands (15 °C). Extreme maximum temperatures can occur in July or August. For example, on 3 July 1976 35.9 °C was recorded at Cheltenham and on 9 August 1911 36.7 °C occurred at Raunds, Northamptonshire. On 3 August 1990, temperatures exceeded 34 °C widely over the Midlands, with 37.1 °C at Cheltenham, a new national record. This stood until the heat wave of August 2003, when 38.5 °C was measured at Faversham, Kent.

The variation of mean daily maximum and minimum temperatures month by month, together with the highest and lowest temperatures recorded, is shown for Brize Norton (Oxfordshire) and Keele (Staffordshire). These graphs reflect the similarity in mean temperatures across the region, with only a gradual south to north gradient. However, extreme minima are dictated more by local topography.

Frost is a widespread, occasionally marked, characteristic of the Midlands. An ‘air frost’ occurs when the temperature at 1.25 metres above the ground falls below 0 °C, whereas incidence of a ‘ground frost’ refers to a temperature below 0 °C measured on a grass surface. The average number of days with air frost in the Midlands varies from about 40 a year in the lower Severn valley to over 65 a year in the Peak District and sheltered areas of the Welsh Marches. Ground frost occurs on average on about 100 to 125 days per year, with a similar distribution to air frost.

The graphs show the average frequency of air and ground frost at Brize Norton and Keele. These show that, although the summer months are usually free of air frost, ground frost may occur at any time of the year, especially at sites in valleys.

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/weather/uk

 

 

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Midlands Climate

Posted at 9:59 pm

Midlands Climate

The Midlands area includes the Cotswold Hills to the south, the Northamptonshire uplands to the east, the Peak District to the north and is bounded by the Welsh border to the west. It includes the Severn and Avon valleys, with their rivers flowing to the south, and the valley of the eastward-flowing Trent in the northern part of the area. Between these 3 valleys is a plateau of altitude 100 – 250 metres, with industrial Birmingham and the Black Country. The Avon and Severn valleys combine in the Vale of Evesham, noted for horticulture. To the west of the Severn are the foothills of the Welsh mountains, rising to about 540 metres in the Clee Hills. To the south of the Avon, the limestone uplands of the Cotswolds rise in a steep escarpment and extend north-eastwards with more gentle slopes into Northamptonshire and Leicestershire. To the north, the Peak District has extensive areas of upland, rising to over 400 metres in north Derbyshire.

The Midlands lies at the geographic heart of England. As such, it has a climate that is essentially transitional between northern and southern England in terms of temperature and between Wales and eastern England as regards rainfall.

Mean annual temperatures over the region vary from around 8 °C to just over 10 °C. The highest values occur in the lower Severn valley, whilst the lowest occur at the higher altitudes such as the Peak District. Over the UK, mean annual temperatures range from about 7 °C in the Shetlands to over 11 °C in Cornwall and the Channel Islands.

Temperature shows both a seasonal and a diurnal variation. Minimum temperatures usually occur around sunrise and maximum temperatures are normally 2 or 3 hours after midday. Since the Midlands region is at some distance from the sea, with its moderating effects on temperature, the annual range is more pronounced than in most parts of the UK. Sharp winter frosts are common and there are occasional very hot summer days, particularly in the south and east of the region. These temperature extremes of both winter and summer are a key characteristic of the Midlands climate.

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