Our Wiltshire summers ain’t wot they used to be – but no expert really knows what will follow
Our miserable summer is continuing unabated and even Marlborough weatherman Eric Gilbert, like experts round the world, doesn’t have a clue as to why they may continue – both here and elsewhere.
But he has some evidence to support the poor summer syndrome that has hit us and told Marlborough News Online: “I would not dare to give an opinion as to what our weather prospects are for the near future. Even the experts appear baffled from time to time and I still feel that forecasts more than a few days ahead are very unreliable.”
The last couple of years or so have been disappointing and the data he collects supports this, he points out. The summers of 2011 and 2012 were in fact the coldest since 1998.
Although lower than the average, many of the summers over the previous 10 years or so were a degree or more above the average, making such a contrast.
“More detailed analysis shows that the really hot days, say around 30C, have occurred several times each year and even up to eight or nine times a year in the decade from 1995,” he adds.
“However, over the last six years the thermometer never reached those heights, other than in 2005, but even then only on two days.”
Closer interrogation of each summer month, June through to August, does support the poor summer complaints that have built up.
“From year to year, since my records began in 1984, there have been record-breaking daily highs over this three-month period,” he added. “But during 2011 and 2012 there has not been one record high.
“In fact quite the opposite is true, as in June 2012 there were two record breaking low maximum temperatures, another five in July, 2012 and for August, two in 2011 and one in 2012.
“Based on data since 1984, the hottest day on average is July 28 followed closely by August 1. The record for the hottest day is a maximum of 35.9C on July 19 2006.”