So, those few fine snow grains earlier today in the wind met your expectations, right?
Safe to say, this was a forecasting flop. At least I downgraded the forecast last night and tried to lower expectations – there are certain other establishments, not to mention the media, who have done even more to set expectations far too high.
In retrospect, I think some cognitive bias crept in when I did the update last night as the models had mostly all shifted to very low snow levels.
So, you’ll all be amused to know that I still think there is a chance of light snow showers later this evening, overnight and tomorrow. I stress the word showers – they will be unpredictable as to where they will be, so you might get some snow, you might not.
If you look at the radar, you’ll see what are known as streamers – normally you’ll see showers moving across in bands, say west to east, but in streamers there is a constant trail of showers – in this case going north-east to south-west.
This is the kind of set-up that can bring some places several cm of snow, and a couple of miles away, nothing. I’m expecting these streamers to continue overnight and into tomorrow – though where they will set up is uncertain. Certainly Kent and similar eastern regions – this far west is debatable but we do have a ticket for the snow lottery.
Worth noting also that the chance of a breakdown to milder conditions this coming weekend is now much reduced – and after a notably cold week, a re-enforcement of the cold, from the east, is now the more likely option.
I’m not sure what to update you with, it hasn’t really changed much from my forecast on Thursday – though there is a slight downgrade to immediate snow prospects, but more or less as I wrote on Thursday.
Also the other difficulty is that the showery nature of the snow overnight – then the snow showers tomorrow, means that even in our fairly small region, different people will have very different amounts of snow.
The further east you are, the more likely you are to get more snow – especially if you are, say, Ascot, Bracknell, Windsor, etc. This isn’t linear – places further west could get more then places further east. North a slight advantage, hills a slight advantage – but east generally best.
So, no, I cannot tell you how much snow you will have in your back garden!
What I do know is that showery rain is pushing west currently – it probably clears west by late evening, perhaps turning to sleet but probably not snow.
Then after midnight, further rain/sleet will push west – it may struggle to get this far west, but it should turn to snow if it does. Some places probably won’t see snow overnight, but some will, especially further east with say around 1cm by dawn. It is feasible that some heavier snow pushes this far inland overnight, so I cannot rule out 1-3cm more widely – but keep expectations low for overnight.
Sunday will see occasional showery snow pushing west at times – the bulk of it will remain towards London, especially Essex and Kent, but at times it will get this far west – I think perhaps there is a signal for a greater chance in the evening that at any other point.
Again, keep your expectations under control – you may miss the showers in your location, but broadly speaking, 1-2cm is realistic by midnight. Could be more – could be less, and different areas in the region will have different amounts. It will be cold and windy – around 1’C at best and feeling much colder.
Monday and Tuesday will see further snow showers pushing in from the east – quite how many will get this far inland is uncertain and won’t be known until very close to the time.
More likely cold and dry until weather systems try to push in from the west later in the week which could bring more general snow – but this is all highly uncertain – maybe the cold and dry air will stop weather fronts even getting this far.
Don’t be surprised if temperatures don’t get above 0’C some days this coming week, and they will be below overnight. It really is going to be a notable cold spell and could well last 2-3 weeks, perhaps with a mildish blip next weekend but that is uncertain.
The cold spell is on. Nailed on. It could end up being one of those talked-about spells for years to come.
We shall see. Severity is still to be established. Quite how cold it will get is uncertain, quite how much snow we’ll get is also uncertain. How long it will last is uncertain. When it will snow after the initial Sunday spell is also uncertain.
Lots of questions. I shall try to give as best a guide as I can.
But first, some rain. And thanks to Paul for the very wet photograph.
Oh and I appreciate that severe weather is problematic for some people. Weather will do what weather will do – I don’t control it. As a weather fanatic, I look forward to the extremes so please do excuse my excitement if you feel it misplaced.
This evening sees quite a rash of showers, some heavy. These moving north-east and it will be mostly dry after midnight, or an hour or so after. Around 6’C.
Friday sees low pressure over Ireland.
Early cloud will clear to sunny spells. Some showers will push across from the west, more likely in the afternoon and they could be heavy. No guarantee of one, but more likely catching a couple. 10’C. Overnight the low pressure starts to shift south a bit, and a weather front will start to form roughly over us – exact location isn’t certain so there could be some showery rain, or not, depending as to whether we are under the fairly thin weather front. Fog possible if not raining, down to around 4’C.
Saturday sees this low pressure move south and be consumed by the low pressure moving up from Spain. There will be showery rain at times, tending to become more persistent from the east later in the afternoon. Around 7’C but an easterly wind will pick up and it will feel colder. Have I built the suspense well?
Saturday evening continues the theme, further rain spreading west, the colder air creeping south, the easterly wind strengthens – the rain will turn to sleet and then snow – say by around midnight, give or take a few hours.
It is feasible that it fizzles out without giving much snow, but more likely it continues to snow on and off overnight – accumulations of around 1-2cm would seem reasonable. Around 0’C.
For Sunday we are in the easterly with low pressure very close to our south-east.
Quite how far west the snow will get on Sunday is uncertain – assuming there remains a weather front then it should be this far west, quite a bit further west in fact. But, there is still a small chance that we remain cloudy and cold, with the odd snow shower.
The more likely outcome sees general snow or showery snow. Accumulations of 2-5cm realistic – more not out of the question. 1’C at best but a rather biting wind-chill. Snow showers remain possible overnight, though the extent is highly uncertain right now, away from the east of England anyway. Down to around -3’C but feeling much colder.
Monday will be cloudy, cold and windy. Snow showers possible but I don’t know whether they will get this far inland. 1’C at best, perhaps not even above freezing though. Similar overnight, down to around -2’C.
Tuesday remains mostly cloudy, cold and breezy. A small chance of further snow showers. Cold and cloudy overnight, down to around -2’C.
Wednesday probably dry with some sunny spells. Cold, 1’C.
Thursday may see the first attempt from the Atlantic to bring milder air in – but if it does, then it will likely be a spell of snow, or snow eventually turning to rain.
Anything after that is uncertain – the general theme will be milder and wetter air trying to move in from the south-west, colder air trying to block it.
Where the mild and cold air masses meet there will be significant, disruptive snowfall. That could be here – or it could be further north. Impossible to say.
Certainly when the “milder” air first arrives, it will fall as snow. It may take a couple of attempts to bring milder air in with rain – it might not even win out at all. And if milder air does win, I’d expect further cold air to push back south again – it may be a very brief victory for mild.
A very interesting spell ahead. Didn’t get too excited, did I?…
The ongoing battle between much colder air to our north-east, and milder/wetter weather to our south-west will continue this week – and all month in all likelihood.
Milder for a time this week with some rain – but at the end of the week and into the weekend much colder air tries to spill down from the north-east, at the same time as some unusually warm air spreads up from Africa, taking a path through Sardinia. The cold probably wins – and where the air masses meet, there will be significant snow.
But where will air masses meet? It could be northern England, it could be northern France – or it could be somewhere in between. You might even see the b-word mentioned in due course.
Expect a lot of uncertainty in this forecast, after the first few days.
Thanks to Kate for the photograph – had rather a few good ones, but the wettest one is the most appropriate.
Tonight will be mostly cloudy, rain spreading across roughly 11pm to 5am – heavy for a time too. Chilly to start but picking up to around 7’C by the end of the night.
Tuesday’s weather charts almost look like a normal autumnal winter with low pressure and mild air. This isn’t a normal winter though.
Early rain will quickly clear, some sunshine follows for the morning though the odd shower possible. More heavy showers look like spreading up from the south-west during the afternoon – showers so not guarantee of catching one, but more likely catching a few, and they might merge into a short spell of general heavy rain. Quite windy and much milder, 13’C. Showers still possible in the evening, but becoming dry overnight and around 5’C.
Wednesday is uncertain – and we aren’t even at the uncertain part of the forecast. It looks like a small secondary low is going to develop and spread north-east – it could be over northern France, leaving us dry and bright – a shower possible. The slightly more likely outcome is that we do get a spell of rain during the morning, and brighter after. Around 9’C. Clear spells and chilly overnight, down to around 2’C.
Thursday is a day of sunshine and showers. More sunshine in the morning, fewer showers. Showers likely to become frequent and heavy in the afternoon, perhaps merging into general showery rain. Around 10’C. Becoming dry overnight, a small chance of fog developing, around 5’C.
Friday sees low pressure still hanging around – colder air trying to move in from the north-east but at the moment it shouldn’t win out, as the low pressure will probably be in an awkward position.
Not much happening, quite a bit of cloud, a bit of sun, the odd shower around. 7’C. Probably cloudy overnight, but uncertain – if clear then except a frost instead.
Saturday should start to see it get colder from the east – ish. Not really sure on weather conditions, I’d approximate at something similar to Friday with variable cloud, a bit of sun and some showers around – they should still be of rain, with temperatures close to 5’C – but certainly possible it could be colder, and hence wintry. Uncertain overnight – cold, frosty if clear skies, but cloudy with wintry showers possible instead. Becoming quite windy.
Sunday is not a signed deal by any stretch of the imagination. It is possible that low pressure is still over the UK, with average temperatures and some bits of rain. Vaguely possible that low pressure cleared much further south, and it is really cold but sunny, the odd snow flurry possible.
However the most likely outcome at around a 60% chance, is low pressure to be close to our south with snow showers feeding in on an easterly wind – perhaps even a general spell of snow. Cold, around 2’C but feeling much colder in the wind. Cloudy overnight, further snow showers possible, down to around -1’C.
I stress again for Monday that cold is the most likely outcome at around a 60% chance, but it could be average temperatures with some showery rain instead. But the most likely outcome sees further snow showers, with temperatures around 0’C.
In general, the most likely outcome for next week keeps it cold with snow showers possible at times, with overnight frost and ice.
Weather fronts will likely attempt to bring milder conditions from the south-west at some point, but at this stage impossible to know when or whether they would succeed – they could easily just bump into the cold air and bring more general snow. If the cold spell endures for a while, I’d expect it to gradually become mostly dry with severe overnight frosts.
It is impossible to know is the length of the cold spell, assuming it happens. It could just last a few days, or it could last a week or two…or even longer. I’m kind of assuming that we will at least see some mild and wet weather at times during February – though they may be viewed more as interruptions from the cold spell.
And if we fail with the cold and snow for this coming weekend – that doesn’t mean that it won’t be cold with snow during next week.
I’ll be back on Thursday. Potentially it could be a very interesting forecast to make…it could turn out to be one of those winter spells that people talk about for years. We shall see…a notable cold spell is quite likely, but far from a done deal.…
Thanks to Milica for the photograph from last weekend – yes I’m using another snowy photograph. And indeed, there is another chance of snow this weekend – though much more marginal than it was last Sunday.
Tonight starts cloudy and mild, a band of rain – some heavy, will cross roughly between 9pm and midnight. Quite windy, around 11’C.
Friday morning sees a cluster of showers pass through for a couple of hours, it will brighten up afterwards – but always more cloud than sunshine, and a stray shower possible. Mild, 11’C. Overnight, a very weak weather front tries to push down from the north, attempting to bring colder air and a spot of rain – but is rebuffed by mild re-enforcements from the south-west, which will bring more persistent and heavy rain from around 3am, give or take. Around 6’C.
Saturday starts wet with this weather front over the south of England – it is trying to move north but gets stuck as the cold air to the north moves down. And during this process, it will turn to sleet and possibly snow at times.
It is another very marginal call, if pushed then I’d see it is more likely we’d see some snow falling, but a general wintry mix – some rain, some sleet and some snow. There’s a risk of small accumulations, but likewise on the flip side it could just be mostly rain. Around 3’C. The band of rain/sleet/snow will weaken as the afternoon goes on and sink back south. Cold and frosty overnight, ice possible, down to around -2’C.
Sunday is an even more impossible call. It should start cold with hazy sunshine – but the next low pressure system will be attempting to advance.
I’m not yet sure on the track – very feasible it stays to our south, perhaps the slightly more likely outcome and we’ll just be cloudy and cold, around 4’C.
However there is a fair chance that it will make inroads and bring some sleet or snow – though if it does, the more likely outcome is that it would turn to rain.
But really, an impossible call right now.
Monday’s weather depends on what happened on Sunday, however the slightly more likely outcome is something chilly or cold, fairly cloudy and fairly dry.
Tuesday should see the milder air win out once more, with a band of rain – heavy at times, crossing the UK, perhaps briefly preceded by sleet or snow. Followed by sunshine and showers. Around 11’C – assuming the mild air has won…I don’t have full confidence at all.
Wednesday most likely mild, with some showers. Around 10’C.
At some point I’d expect much colder air to spread back from the north or east – perhaps as early as Thursday, but more likely from Saturday or Sunday. More likely cold and dry, wintry showers possible but more of a stress on dry.
Often cold during February, snow will remain very possible – I’d be surprised if it didn’t snow again this winter. Still uncertain as to whether we’ll get a more lengthy cold/very cold spell, or continue with a similar pattern as to now, often cold but with milder and wet interludes – and with sleet/snow on the boundary of the two air masses.
Expect lots more uncertainty. Most interesting winter for forecasting for a while – in my opinion since 2013. You could argue 2018 as that was a classic SSW response, bring the Beast From The East – but that didn’t happen until the end of winter.
So I hope you enjoyed the snow. I’d be very surprised if it is the last time this winter that you get snow on the ground, let alone falling. But it is going to turn milder during this week.
Thanks to Em for the photograph – I haven’t read all the messages and comments – 363 comments the last time I looked! Normally I would, but just been too busy the last few days. So there are a lot of photographs that I haven’t seen – and I could even have been persuaded to use a sunrise photograph, given how stunning sunrise was yesterday.
Tonight will be cold, frosty and icy – down to around -3’C. Cloud thickening from the west later in the night.
Tuesday sees rain spreading across. Arriving mid-morning, light and patchy for the morning, some heavyish bursts in the afternoon but still very sporadic. Still on the cold side, 5’C, breezy later too. Still some light rain in the evening, mostly dry overnight – rather cloudy with a few clear spells, around 6’C.
For Wednesday, the ongoing battle between mild air to the south-west and cold to the north/east can be seen clearly.
The milder air will be winning, generally mostly cloudy and around 8’C. Some patchy rain later in the afternoon. The rain becomes heavy and persistent in the evening and tries to push further north-east – though at the same time the colder air tries to push back. Really quite a wet night – temperatures probably close to around 8’C still, but something milder, say 11’C possible – likewise something colder, say 4’C possible – those two air masses very close together.
Thursday starts wet. The rain band will very slowly push north-east – struggling to make inroads, but as the morning progresses the rain will become lighter and patchier – the should be some brightness before the day is over. Proper mild air should win out, with temperatures around 12’C – but some uncertainty remains on this. Further heavy rain overnight, and still mild.
Friday most likely sees further showery rain – though any further details are uncertain at this point, as I’m not yet sure where weather fronts will be – but they should be close enough for showery rain at some point. Generally fairly cloudy and mild, 10’C, some brightness at times possible and fairly breezy. It looks like colder air then spreads south again overnight – if any weather fronts remain then rain could turn to sleet or snow – but that is highly uncertain at this stage.
The most likely outcome for Saturday is cold with sunny spells – a small chance of a wintry shower. Though not with especially high confidence. Frost likely overnight.
Sunday is highly uncertain. Weather fronts will be trying to push in from the west – and at this stage it isn’t certain when they will arrive. If forced to, I’d suggest it is slightly more likely to stay dry and cold for Sunday.
When weather fronts arrive, either Sunday or Monday, there could be a spell of snow before it turns to rain.
Next week should be back in the milder air – with further heavy rain and perhaps strong winds also. Yet the cold air will remain close, so there could easily be a day or two of snow air – and should that happen, some snow could precede the next set of weather fronts when the milder air pushes in again.
After next week, the chance of more notable and lengthy cold weather will increase – and possibly could be from the east.…
So the snow event for Sunday is on – but there remains some uncertainty on details.
The band of snow will cross west to east in the morning, I think roughly 9am to 11am – but it could arrive as early as 6am or as late as 11am – quite a wide range for just 12 hours away.
The most likely outcome is that it falls as snow, with 2-3cm expected, probably quite heavy for a time. However, there could be some rain or sleet mixed in – a small chance, but if so, then expect more of a slushy covering. On the flip side, it could instead snow for longer as the system pivots – 5cm or more cannot be ruled out either.
The pivot that I mentioned will see the band of snow to our north (exact location uncertain) before then pushing south in the evening – so a further spell of snow (probably…could be sleet or a wintry mix instead), probably fairly light at this point.
It’s all very marginal – marginal in favour of snow but marginal all the same. As I mentioned, the most likely outcome sees 2-3cm of snow – but it remains possible that you could get very little, or a slushy mix instead. Enjoy…or not!…
So we are back in the cold, and there are more marginal call rain/snow events to provide some forecasting fun. Or forecasting frustration.
Thanks to Paul for the photograph.
This evening starts cloudy, you might just get a splash of rain from a weather front skirting the southern counties of England. Overnight will be clear, breezy with a frost for most, down to around 0’C.
Friday morning will see good spells of sunshine. Some more cloud in the afternoon, one or two scattered showers though many places missing them. 6’C. A chance of a wintry shower in the evening (birthday present for me?), then overnight will be cold and frosty, though a fair amount of high/medium level cloud also. Down to around -2’C, a small chance of some icy patches, and also the odd fog patch by dawn.
Saturday sees low pressure in control to the north-east of the UK, with a cold flow circulating down from the north-west.
Hazy sunshine to start, but as the day goes on there will be more in the way of sunshine, with some fair weather cloud. Cold, 4’C with a small chance of a wintry shower. Clear spells at first overnight with a frost, cloud thickening somewhat later in the night. Down to -3’C – perhaps quite a bit lower in sheltered spots.
Sunday is uncertain, but there is a reasonable suggestion that a trough feature will develop and track east – if it does then I’d fancy it to fall as snow for 1-2 hours – and if it does fall as snow then it should settle, perhaps 1-3cm.
However – it is uncertain, it is a little feature that could very easy track further south than currently suggested, or perhaps have a slight mild core causing it to be rain/sleet, or just not actually develop at all. The slight favourite, is for a short spell of snow, more likely during the morning – but timing is uncertain also.
Otherwise Sunday will be quite cloudy, but often bright with some sunshine. 4’C. Clear spells overnight so frosty, down to around -3’C. Should there be snow cover, it could be a bit colder and ice will be a problem too.
Monday remains cold. It should be dry, with sunny spells and variable amounts of cloud, 4’C. Clear spells at first overnight, frosty, down to around -2’C. High cloud arriving from the west later in the night.
Tuesday sees a start of a change to milder and wetter conditions. Starting bright and cold, cloud will thicken with rain crossing during the afternoon – perhaps a bit of sleet or wet snow to start, but most likely rain. Around 5’C and breezy. Variable cloud overnight, around 6’C.
Wednesday sees the milder, south-westerly flow start to gather more steam.
Fairly cloudy, rain and strong winds arriving at some point – most likely late in the day or evening. 8’C.
Day to day details from here are not possible, but the general pattern will be a mild south-westerly flow, often cloudy, with strong winds and rain at times. It might even reach the giddy heights of 14’C next Friday/Saturday with some very mild air tucked in (perhaps 20’C in Madrid – home of that huge snowstorm the other week).
Most likely it turns colder again after next weekend. And then probably back to mild and wet…then colder…then mild and wet. That kind of switching pattern.
Up in the stratosphere, if you follow me enough, you’ll know that there was a sudden stratospheric warming event on 5th January. They often bring lengthy very cold spells to the UK, roughly from 2-4 weeks after, though not always and the timeline isn’t a set pattern either.
These lengthy very cold spells (ie Beast From The East in 2018) are more likely to happen if the SSW causes the stratospheric polar vortex to split. The SSW from 5th January did not cause it to split – it displaced it and weakened it. Hence no lengthy, very cold spell within the 2-4 weeks since 5th January.
However, models are now suggesting a second SSW event at the end of the month, causing a split. So, cautiously, I’d suggest a lengthy, cold/very cold spell is possible from around the middle of February. Even if the second SSW event doesn’t happen, the original SSW can still influence our weather patterns for possibly some months after, so either way further cold spells are likely in the coming months. And yeah, that includes spring.
Have a good weekend, I will update on Sunday’s snow chances Saturday morning at the latest.…
We stay in the similar pattern of late, with alternating colder, drier and milder, wetter air sources – though cold remains the dominant theme.
And wherever the boundary between the milder, wetter air and the colder, drier air happens to be will see some significant snowfall. This boundary is always more likely to be further north than us, but we are in the game. Like it or not, we have a ticket to the snow raffle.
Thanks to Tracy for the photograph – evidence that it did snow down south this winter!
This evening and overnight will see showery outbreaks of rain spreading from the west – rain more persistent around midnight and in the few hours after. Windy and becoming milder too, 10’C by the end of the night.
Tuesday sees milder weather to the south/south-west – colder weather to the north, low pressure stuck in between.
Tuesday will be rather cloudy and windy. Some brightness at times but fairly limited, some bits of rain also but nothing of note. 10’C. Later in the afternoon and into the evening, more general showery rain spreading across again from the west. Strong winds too, 10’C.
Wednesday remains cloudy, mild and windy, with further showery rain on and off all day – some light, some heavyish. 10’C. The rain becoming heavy or very heavy for a spell either evening or overnight before it clears – clearer and colder air following, down to 3’C.
For Thursday we are back in the colder air, though nothing especially so yet at 8’C. Starting sunny, cloud will thicken somewhat as the day goes on – perhaps a bit of rain by late afternoon but uncertain if it will get this far north. Still a chance of a bit of rain in the evening, but becoming clear overnight – down to around 0’C with a frost for some.
Friday sees us in a slack northerly flow. Sunny spells, a small chance of a shower, 6’C. Probably dry overnight – fog and/or frost possible.
The weekend remains cold but details are otherwise uncertain. Areas of showers could cross at some point, more likely rain but sleet/snow possible instead. Temperatures between 3’C and 5’C by day, frost likely overnight, ice possible.
Most likely the colder air hangs on for another day on Monday, before milder weather with some wind and rain spreads up from the south-west either Monday night or during Tuesday.
And then at some point next week, colder weather should spread back down from the north. And then it will go mild again…then cold again…you get the picture I’m sure!
I do think as we get into February, milder, wetter spells will probably last longer than colder, drier spells – and I expect a trend to drier (and mild?) by the latter part of February.
I am also increasingly confident that the SSW event that occurred on 5th January will not lead to Beast From The East conditions – the stratospheric polar vortex is weakened rather than split, and without it being split, I think Beast From The East conditions are much less likely. That is my reading of it anyway. Further stratospheric warmings are possible, so a split to the weakened vortex could happen further down the line but nothing is imminent in terms of chances of a post-SSW severe cold spell like 2013 or 2018.
Perhaps the eventual outcome from the SSW event will be a colder than normal spring? It’s pencilled into my expectations but more time and research required.…
The battle between cold and mild continues – though cold will mostly win for now. Expect a bit of everything that is usual for the time of year over the next week or so – and yes, there is another marginal rain/snow event…the joys of forecasting!
No photograph this week.
It will be fairly cloudy tonight, any early light rain will fade, a frost in places, the odd pocket of fog, but mostly just cloudy and cold. Down to around 0’C, some ice possible.
Friday starts rather cloudy, but with some brightness. Cloud generally will lesson, more in the way of sunshine, albeit hazy as the day goes on. Cold, 4’C. A frost at first overnight, down to around -2’C, but temperatures pick up a tad overnight as cloud thickens with some light…rain…arriving before dawn as a weather front arrives.
Saturday sees this weather front bump into the cold air, and it is certainly possible that we see a spell of 1-2 hours of sleet or snow in the early part of the morning, perhaps a temporary slushy covering. Very marginal, as it always has been this winter, but I think more likely than not. It will turn back to rain fairly quickly, and clear by mid/late afternoon. Around 6’C by time the rain has cleared. Variable amounts of cloud overnight – probably too much cloud for a frost, down to around 2’C.
Sunday sees a ridge of high pressure over the UK. Some sunny spells, albeit generally quite hazy. 6’C. Variable cloud overnight, a frost in places – down to 0’C, give or take.
Monday sees low pressure approaching from both the south-west, and north – the former with the mild air and the latter with the colder air. The milder air wins this time.
Monday itself looks dry, some sunshine, some cloud. Sunshine generally rather hazy. 6’C. Overnight sees some rain, freshening winds, and a tad milder, 8’C.
Tuesday looks windy with rain at times – some heavy. Some dry spells in between. Windy in a fairly mild south-westerly – 10’C. Outbreaks of rain still possible overnight – uncertain as to when the low pressure clears east.
For Wednesday, a cooler flow from the north-west takes back over. Sunny spells, probably dry – just a very small chance of a stray shower, around 6’C. Breezy also. Chilly overnight – at the moment it looks most likely to be too windy for a frost. Around 2’C.
Thursday looks cool and windy – sunny spells, a small chance of a stray shower. Around 6’C.
Probably cold or fairly cold for Friday and into next weekend.
That’s about as far as I can go with reasonable confidence – everything is very much up in the air for medium-term weather forecasting thanks to the sudden-stratospheric warming event from 5th January, which is still not fully resolved or understood in terms of its implications for the troposphere (our level of the atmosphere).
What I do know is that the polar vortex did not split – like it did in 2013 or 2018 – it was merely displaced and significantly weakened.
So my best reading at the moment is that the chance of a “Beast From The East” type event is low. However, the chance of further cold weather from the north, similar to what we’ve been seeing over the last few weeks is quite reasonable.
Generally, I think the most likely outcome for the next few weeks is something similar to the current pattern of cold weather trying to push down from the north, milder air (with rain) pushing up from the south-west. Where the two air masses meet, there will often be significant snowfall but that is more likely to be north England or Scotland – but it still could happen at our level.
I’d suggest therefore that wetter than normal is most likely in the medium term, and generally becoming milder more often as the pattern tends to shift north – to the point for the latter part of February where we are fairly dry and probably mild, with the rain to our north.
There is high uncertainty however, so I’m low in confidence. I’ve seen model output with 14’C daytime temperatures for 2 weeks time – and also output with -5’C daytime temperatures! Make of that what you will. My assumption is that the SSW is playing havoc with the models, and I’m not too trusting of them at the moment.
I do also have a suspicion that the SSW may imprint on our weather patterns into spring, and lead to more northerly flows than normal – ie more cold weather in spring. Sorry. But as I said, very low confidence of anything going into the future.…