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Blizzards of December 7th/8th/9th 1990 and January 1991


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Posted
  • Location: Solihull
  • Location: Solihull

    When I was a wee nipper at the grand old age of 7, back in December 1990 (!), I can remember there being a huge overnight dumping of snow (approx. 15inches) in the Birmingham area. It started on Friday evening and stopped mid Saturday.

    Looking through some old albums I also came across a photo taken in January 1991 with similar conditions. Can anyone remember the weather patterns for these events and where all the snow came from (continent or northerly flow?)?

    If you have them, some photo's would be good too, especially from around the Midlands.

    I have Google'd it to death and have found pretty much nothing. Many thanks in advance. :blink:

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    Posted
  • Location: Norfolk
  • Location: Norfolk
    When I was a wee nipper at the grand old age of 7, back in December 1990 (!), I can remember there being a huge overnight dumping of snow (approx. 15inches) in the Birmingham area. It started on Friday evening and stopped mid Saturday.

    Looking through some old albums I also came across a photo taken in January 1991 with similar conditions. Can anyone remember the weather patterns for these events and where all the snow came from (continent or northerly flow?)?

    If you have them, some photo's would be good too, especially from around the Midlands.

    I have Google'd it to death and have found pretty much nothing. Many thanks in advance. :blink:

    Well, Feb 7th 1991 saw a lovely dumping of snow from an easterly - is this the one you mean? If so, the charts are shown in the thread in my name below

    Edited by snowmaiden
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    Posted
  • Location: Upper Tweeddale, Scottish Borders 240m ASL
  • Location: Upper Tweeddale, Scottish Borders 240m ASL

    Here's the three charts:

    Rrea00119901207.gif

    Rrea00119901208.gif

    Rrea00119901209.gif

    So it was a classic N'ly to start with caused by a strong extensive Greenland High extending far south into the mid-Atlantic, pulling down cold air over the UK. And it either that a vigorous depression moved in from the SW wrapping the cold air around itself - which moved up through the English Channel and settled over southern England, or a depression formed over central England and sat there. Classic synotpic event :blink:

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    Posted
  • Location: South Derbyshire nr. Burton on Trent, Midlands, UK: alt 262 feet
  • Weather Preferences: Extreme winter cold,heavy bowing snow,freezing fog.Summer 2012
  • Location: South Derbyshire nr. Burton on Trent, Midlands, UK: alt 262 feet
    When I was a wee nipper at the grand old age of 7, back in December 1990 (!), I can remember there being a huge overnight dumping of snow (approx. 15inches) in the Birmingham area. It started on Friday evening and stopped mid Saturday.

    Looking through some old albums I also came across a photo taken in January 1991 with similar conditions. Can anyone remember the weather patterns for these events and where all the snow came from (continent or northerly flow?)?

    If you have them, some photo's would be good too, especially from around the Midlands.

    I have Google'd it to death and have found pretty much nothing. Many thanks in advance. :D

    Hi millz,

    This set-up may have produced the snowfall you remember, although low ground probably would have seen sleet rather than snow as the 850's were only around -5c, on the other hand if precipitation were heavy, snow would have been quite possible over low ground as well.

    I certainly remember a similar event around that time, I was walking home in the cold rain, late in the night from a Christmas party, and sad anorak that I am remember looking up at the lamp posts on the way home and noticing the odd blob of sleet mixed in the rain.

    On waking the following morning I was quite surprised to discover a huge dumping of snow, which must have been at least 9 inches deep. The snow continued to fall heavy all day on that Saturday; the temperature was hovering around freezing all day in a near gale force wind, the snow was to wet to drift, but the very wet snow easily coated trees and more interestingly overhead power lines, later that day considerable disruption occurred as thousands of power lines collapsed under the weight of ice and snow. Thousands of homes lost their power and it was many weeks before some outlying areas were reconnected. :o

    Paul :

    edit lol Shuggee beat me to it.

    Rrea00119901209.gif

    Rrea00219901209.gif

    Edited by Paul Carfoot
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    Posted
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts
  • Weather Preferences: Rain/snow, fog, gales and cold in every season
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts

    I remember the snowfall of December 1990 vividly. We had a tremendous blizzard here, almost 40cm of level snow with a E/NE wind gusting to 67 mph and averaging 40-44 mph. Visibility was nil at times and the snow was as fine as talcum powder, blown into huge drifts by late afternoon.

    The temperature was around -2c for most of the day but rose to around freezing overnight when the snowfall, and the wind, abated.

    T.M

    Edited by Terminal Moraine
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    Posted
  • Location: Solihull
  • Location: Solihull

    Thanks very much to all. I remember looking out of my parents bedroom window to see the massive snowflakes falling very heavily and swirling around every so often, but mainly from a north-easterly direction.

    Has anyone got any pictures they could share from where they were at the time?

    Edited by millzzz
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    • 2 weeks later...
    Posted
  • Location: Leicester endz
  • Location: Leicester endz

    I dont seem to remmber this event well but my parents talk about this one alot. It was probably the best snow event for the midlands in the last 25 years. I remember the snow being very wet and stuck instantly to trees and power lines. We were without power for about 48 hours. We had about 12-13" of snow. I remember the snow lasting for about 1-2 weeks even though there was a thaw.

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    The snow event of 8 December 1990 must have been very marginal, as Durham for example did not report a day with lying snow at 0900 that month. It was apparently very wet snow at low levels, but fell heavily enough in the Midlands to settle- a very "sticky" type of snow leading to major disruption. Lancaster had wet snow but, as is usual for that location, it provided nothing more than a dusting there.

    Not sure about January 1991, I haven't heard of any snow events in the Midlands that month. However, there were severe snowstorms in northern Scotland from, unusually, SW winds around the 3rd, and around the 6th-11th there were polar maritime W/NW'lys that might have brought marginal snow events to the Midlands.

    February 1991 was a different matter; an easterly flow that was both cold and unstable dumped large amounts of snow cover over much of central and eastern Britain, there was even a bit in many western areas.

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    Posted
  • Location: Powys Mid Wales borders.
  • Location: Powys Mid Wales borders.
    Not sure about January 1991, I haven't heard of any snow events in the Midlands that month. However, there were severe snowstorms in northern Scotland from, unusually, SW winds around the 3rd, and around the 6th-11th there were polar maritime W/NW'lys that might have brought marginal snow events to the Midlands.

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119910103.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219910103.gif

    I seen what you mean about Scotland having snow from SW gales it was cold here that day with some rain/sleet.

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119910104.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219910104.gif

    As far as this day it dropped to -2 that night and we had a covering of snow with a max of about 3c.

    S9

    Edited by Snowyowl9
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    Posted
  • Location: Western Isle of Wight
  • Weather Preferences: Snow, Storm, anything loud and dramatic.
  • Location: Western Isle of Wight
    Not sure about January 1991, I haven't heard of any snow events in the Midlands that month. However, there were severe snowstorms in northern Scotland from, unusually, SW winds around the 3rd, and around the 6th-11th there were polar maritime W/Nellys that might have brought marginal snow events to the Midlands.

    February 1991 was a different matter; an easterly flow that was both cold and unstable dumped large amounts of snow cover over much of central and eastern Britain, there was even a bit in many western areas.

    My spell check auto corrected your quote.....W/nellys :)

    Not sure if this is Jan or Feb 1991, I took it from my roof window at that timepost-4726-1160263485.jpg

    it shows the cliff and shore from Shanklin towards Sandown. It was below freezing all day when i took it, i had a wood burner in that room(!) It was roaring, that's what kept the snow of my roof. We had a burst pipe which i had just mended, spotted whilst still frozen, thank god :) i was thawing the rest

    The beach had a good few inches of snow, it was my first experience of snow next the sea as i had never lived near it before, quite surreal at the time :)

    Edited by Rustynailer
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    • 13 years later...

    Doing some reminiscing this evening (as you do at the end of a decade!). I do have a couple of pictures from December 8 1990 - Shirley, West Midlands which show the depth of snow. From what I can recall it was in excess of 15 inches by the late afternoon. I would be happy to post these pictures.

    Tim Brear.

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    Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
    10 hours ago, Tim Brear said:

    Doing some reminiscing this evening (as you do at the end of a decade!). I do have a couple of pictures from December 8 1990 - Shirley, West Midlands which show the depth of snow. From what I can recall it was in excess of 15 inches by the late afternoon. I would be happy to post these pictures.

    Tim Brear.

    Hi Tim. A warm welcome to the forum. :oldsmile: Yes, please do post your pics. If you've not done this before, use the 'Choose files' option to locate the pics on you laptop and select then press OK.

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