Warmest, sun­ni­est May for quar­ter of a cen­tury

Loughborough Echo - - NEWS - PHIL MORRISH

MAY was the warmest and sun­ni­est month for 26 years and came sec­ond af­ter 1992 for warmth and sun­shine in records go­ing back more than 100 years.

Af­ter­noon tem­per­a­tures peaked at 19c which was 2.5c above nor­mal while night time val­ues were logged at 9c 1.5c above nor­mal. The mean of 14.1c was the high­est for 26 years.

May was also a dry month. In Mountsor­rel I recorded 48mm of rain which was 12 per cent be­low nor­mal but most of this fell on just four days with 23 days in the month be­ing com­pletely dry.

The rea­son for the dry­ness and warmth was high pres­sure which was over or around the Bri­tish Isles for most of the month.

The jet stream was di­verted north­wards over Ice­land and Scan­di­navia leav­ing us on the warmer and drier south­ern side of the jet.

As a re­sult of all the high pres­sure sun­shine to­tals were very high. We recorded a mag­nif­i­cent 259 hours of sun­shine in May and it was the first month in over two years to break the 200 hours bar­rier.

In­deed May 2018 was only seven hours of sun­shine short of the record sun­shine to­taL of 266 hours set in 1992. Winds were mainly light and blew in from the East and South with much higher fre­quency than usual as High pres­sure sat mostly just to our north.

The open­ing week of the month saw ini­tially some rain but dry and sunny con­di­tions soon de­vel­oped.

The warmest day of the month co­in­cided with the first bank holiday Mon­day when tem­per­a­tures reached a stag­ger­ing 25.4c mak­ing it the warmest and sun­ni­est first bank holiday of the month since it be­gan in 1978 af­ter some very hot air over the Mediter­ranean moved north to reach our shores. Af­ter a few un­set­tled days the warm and sunny theme re­sumed again on the 14th with 10 days of mostly sunny skies with our sun­ni­est day of 15 hours of bright sun­shine recorded on the 22nd.

There was a brief blip on the 25th when 14 mm of rain fell but then the weather warmed up nicely again for a sec­ond bank holiday in a row with tem­per­a­tures on the 27th reach­ing 25c once again.

A cloudy last cou­ple of days pre­vented us break­ing the all time sun­shine record for May but nev­er­the­less it was a fan­tas­tic month if you like dry and sunny con­di­tions.

The MET of­fice have just re­leased their 3 month guide­line fore­cast for the sum­mer and while its not a pre­cise fore­cast their is a 25 per cent probability that the sum­mer will fit into the warmest and dri­est cat­e­gory and only a five per cent chance that it will be a cool one.

Th­ese long term fore­casts must be treated with some cau­tion as we are still many years away from be­ing able to pro­duce ac­cu­rate seasonal fore­casts but the signs are en­cour­ag­ing! Have a great week­end.

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