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Long Range Forcast

Autumn & the start of Winter 2016

Updated 22nd September 2016

After some record breaking warmth in September, October is expected to see temperatures generally closer to the norm for the time of year, the southwest of England potentially bucking that trend though. The air pressure anomaly shown below does show slightly higher than average pressure across the north of the British Isles, but this is a fairly weak anomaly so isn't forecast to have too much of an impact on the rainfall patterns. Western Scotland, Northern Ireland and perhaps also Southeast England are forecast to be wetter than average, with other regions nearer to normal.

October Air Pressure
Long range forecast
October Rainfall
October Rainfall
October Temperature
October Temperature



Into the final month of Autumn, and slightly higher than average pressure anomalies are still in play - generally to the north and also east of the British Isles. Should it occur (and bearing in mind that confidence always falls away as we move through the long range forecast), then a fairly blocked month is on the cards, with rainfall amounts seeing a west to east split - wettest, and wetter than average in the west. Temperatures are currently forecast to be close to, or milder than the seasonal norm.

November Air Pressure
Long range forecast
November Rainfall
November Rainfall
November Temperature
November Temperature



Winter - December
Exceptionally low confidence at this stage, with a lot of uncertainty around the global drivers and likely pattern as we move into Winter. Currently though, the long range model is again going with slightly higher than average pressure to the north of the Britain and Ireland. It's a weak anomaly though, which is to be expected with this amount of uncertainty, but the phrase 'Northern Blocking' may be used come the winter should something similar to this play out.

More on this in the next update, plus of course in the full winter forecast issued during November.

December Air Pressure
December Air Pressure




UK Winter Forecast: 

December: A month dominated by high pressure. Temperatures close to the average for the UK, with high pressure dominating across Scandinavia, providing chilly Easterly winds. A frosty, cold month with light rain showers for the East Coast, which at times will be wintry. A drier month for Central Britain, however at times the Atlantic will bring rain and wind for Western Scotland and the West of Northern Ireland.


January: A Colder, Wetter and Wintrier Month.

January is likely to be dominated by low pressure, bringing cold North Westerly winds, wintry showers and generally fairly wet weather for many areas. At times, winds will rotate to the NE as high pressure builds over Iceland, providing chilly Easterly winds, which increases risk of disruptive weather. Temperature: At or Slightly Below average.Precipitation: Slightly Above Average.

February - Very Uncertain, chances of dominant blocking.

In weather forecasting, long range forecasts are always experimental. However signs are that blocking could become even more dominant this month, giving drier weather than experienced earlier in the winter.

The United Kingdom is positioned on the boundary of major air masses, these air masses interact with each other in a volatile sense, therefore it is difficult to predict long range weather. Further updates will be provided, however a combination of La Nina (jet stream weakening), (and the jet stream provides usual "wet and windy" weather), lower solar activity (sunspot numbers), is causing the polar vortex (an area of very cold air over the pole), to be displaced, this means that for Winter 2016/17, there is a higher risk of cold air sinking south and affecting mid latitude areas.

The jet stream will still have some strength, and is still likely to poise a threat, meaning there will be "cold spells" this winter, and in January, these could be significant. Please stay tuned for further updates, the weather team.