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Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    Having read this comment by Mr Data,

    'to think, John, there has only been 8 sub zero February CETs and you have lived through half of them! I though it might be 'fun' to see what that data showed.'

    Ignoring the ones prior to 1947and listing them in order of severity.

    1947 -1.9

    1986 -1.1

    1963 -0.7

    1956 -0.2

    Life is never straight forward so trying to give representative data for each month is not that easy. Why? Because I worked for the Met Office and during those 38 years I experienced winter months in 8 quite different locations, the distance between the most southerly and northerly being about 9,000 miles, east to west almost 2,000! As it happens 3 out of the 4 coldest occurred whilst at my parents, apart from 1963 when I 'shuttled' back and forth between the Nottingham area and home. The 1986 one I was living south of Manchester and working at Manchester Airport so I'll leave that out for the moment.

    I lived in the Chesterfield area up to 1960(apart from 2 winters in Cyprus), then the Nottingham area (see my 1963 account at Langar).

    My home village is at around 450ft above sea level so the data might differ from Finningley, at least the snowfall although temperatures are probably pretty similar. I had thought of using Sheffield Weston Park but it only has temperature data, no snowfall or frosts.

    I show the complete winter, December to February in each instance for comparison purposes.

    Interestingly I have found my own weather diary which includes the winter of 1955-56, so at some stage I'll try and make it readable.

    Remember the data shown above is the CET data that below is for Finningley.

    Excel table for the winters quoted

    if anyone can sort this table out to enable it to show in the body of the text I would be very grateful!

    table_for_my_worst_winters.xls

    Nb: the air and ground frost totals may look odd in the winter of 1955-56 but it is possible that the ground frost was in error due to being covered in snow!

    I really should take up a literary career in that I could set another precedent like Charles Dickens with white Christmas, frost fairs etc. On second thoughts no, even putting this together in not terribly good grammar has taken ages!

    John

    ps: if you spot any arithmetical errors perhaps you would be kind enough to pm me?

    Edited by johnholmes
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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    a quick addition to this

    from my weather diary; February 1956

    cold spell 1-4th, second one 9-25 and 27th

    total snow falling measured at 25 inches with considerable drifting

    coldest morning 12.2F and lowest temp in late afternoon=22.1F

    24 days with frost.

    quite a month it seems

    Edited by johnholmes
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    Posted
  • Location: Salzburger Sportwelt Lungau/ Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Salzburger Sportwelt Lungau/ Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
    a quick addition to this

    from my weather diary; February 1956

    cold spell 1-4th, second one 9-25 and 27th

    total snow falling measued at 25 inches with considerable drifting

    coldest morning 12.2F and lowest temp in late afternoon=22.1F

    24 days with frost.

    quite a month it seems

    John

    I remember the date of 4th February 1956 very well. My baby brother was born on that date. The district nurse had to abandoned her car at the bottom of the lane to our farm because of the depth of snowfall. Ginger was delivered safely in to the arms of mother. Happy days !

    Paul

    Edited by carinthian
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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    indeed I'll post more out of the dairy in time, makes fascinating reading some 50+ years on

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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

    The winter of 1956 features among my earliest memories. I can't remember the date, sometime in mid-February I think, but the road in the village where I lived was completely filled with snow, 8 feet deep on one side, sloping to about 5 feet deep on the other.

    I remember looking from the bedroom window as my older cousin walked over our garden hedge which had completely disappeared under the snow.

    There have been only two occasions in my lifetime when that road has been completely filled with snow, the other was in Feb' 1979; prior to my arrival in the world it was filled on several occasions in the winter of 1947.

    A third time this coming winter would make me very happy.

    T.M

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    My dairy for February 1956,

    temps in F and only read about 0800 and 1600(or as soon as I got back from school)

    Laid out each day in the same way, 0800 temp then 1600 temp with general weather description to follow

    1st=18.5, 22.1; very cold with severe frost at first, frost all day, no thaw, snow in early morning, up to 0830, 4 inches with slight drifting. Sunny for a time then further snow showers, about 1 inch. wind between n and e.

    2nd=12.2, 22.1; very cold with very severe frost at first. some mist at first otherwise sunny all day. cloudy after dark with frost; wind between n and e.

    3rd=23.9, 26.5; keen frost in morning, some cloud in early hours, then sunny by day, some thaw in the sun, wind between n and w.

    4th=28.4, 33.8, keen frost in early morning, but less cold than of late. snow at times in morning, just settled then thawed with rain at times, fresh winds between s and w.

    5th=42.8, 46.4, mild, snow practically all gone. dull much of day, fresh or strong winds much of time between n and w.

    6th=43.7, 46.4, mild, damp and dull, some rain/drizzle later, wind between n and w.

    7th=41.9, 45.5, mild and dull much of day, quite misty in morning, sun tried to get through at lunch time, some rain at times, winds between n and w

    8th= 41.5, 43.7, mild and dull with slight rain or drizzle at times. very dark for a time in afternoon, slight rain or sleet late at night, wind between n and e.

    9th=32, 26.6, much colder with frost at first. slight snow in morning with some bright periods, mostly dull in afternoon with some snow but not settling much, snow showers overnight, wind between s and e.

    10th =18.5, 28.3, very cold with severe frost at first. only thawed in sun, sunny periods with slight snow showers. snow from 6.30pm-11pm, about 2 inches with very slight drifting, wind between n and e.

    11th=24.8, 28.4, keen frost all day, not much thaw. snow at times all day, heavy at times but not settling much, very little sun, light snow at night, wind between n and e.

    12th=34.7, 35.6, less cold with some bright periods, but mostly dull in afternoon. slight snow shower in the morning with occasional flakes after then slight drizzle, by late afternoon snow all gone, winds between n and e

    13th=32.9, 28.4, colder, been slight snow in early hours, frost in parts, light snow until 11am, snow heavy at times later with total of 3.5 inches, slight snow shower at night, wind between s and e.

    14th=25.7, 27.5, very cold with hard frost at first, only thawed a bit in sun, heavy snow 12am to 4am, 5 inches, then sunny all day, wind between n and e.

    15th=26.6, 34.7; keen frost at first, sunny all day with slow thaw in sun; wind between n and e

    16th=26.5, 33.8; cold with frost at first, dull all day with slight snow all morning, not settling, very slight thaw; wind variable

    17th=25.7, 30.2; cold with keen frost at first, only slight thaw in sun, dull at first then mostly sunny, clouding over later with snow flurries; wind between n and e

    18th=25.7, 30.2; same temps, keen frost early with very slight snow in early hours, just covered floor, mostly sunny in morning, snow showers becoming frequent in afternoon, dull after dark with some snow; winds between n and e.

    19th=27.5, 28.4; cold with frost in morning, snow much of morning=3 inches and very slight drifting, some bright spells, clear spells with fog and frost after dark; wind between n and e

    20th=26.1, 28.4; cold with keen frost at first, only very slight thaw in sun. heavy snow shower08-09 and slight drifting, then sunny until late afternoon with heavy snow at times later=3 inches; wind between n and e

    21st=26.6, 28.3; cold with keen frost in morning, dull until late afternoon, no thaw, snow heavy at times 0730-1430=2.5 inches; wind variable

    22nd=26.5,26.5; cold with keen frost in morning, dull with slight rain which froze, then snow 0730-1130 about ½ inch, fresh winds at times and mostly dull with some snow at times, a few short bright intervals; wind between n and e

    23rd=25.7, 31.1; cold with keen frost in morning, some snow to 0830(1/2 inch), sunny rest of morning, sunny periods in afternoon and slow thaw in sun; wind between n and e

    24th=26.5, 29.3; cold with somewhat less keen frost than of late, slight snow at first but sunny later, more cloud in afternoon, slight slow thaw; wind between n and e

    25th=24.7, 32.9; cold with hard frost at first, sunny all day with slow thaw in sun; wind between n and e

    26th=33.5, 38.3; rather cold with ground frost only, not as cold with thaw all day; wind between n and e

    27th=24.7, 38.3; cold with hard frost at first, sunny all day with steady thaw, winds fresh at night; winds between s and w

    28th=38.3, 48.2; rather cold becoming mild with slight rain or drizzle at times; fresh to strong winds at night between s and w

    29th=46.4,41; mild and dull with some bright periods also slight rain., fresh to strong winds becoming gale force with heavy and squally rain and hail, and less mild; winds between w and n

    monthly summary

    Max temp at 8am=46.4(27th)

    Min temp at 8am=12.2(2nd)

    Max temp at 4pm=48.2(28th)

    min temp at 4pm=22.1(1st)

    days with winds between n and e=17

    between s and e=2

    between s and w=3

    between n and w=5

    days with rain=8

    days with snow=16

    days with fog=1

    days with frost=24

    mostly cold or very cold, 1-4, 9-25th

    continuous frost 1st, 3rd, 9-11th and 17th

    heavy snowfalls=5

    maximum in total=25 inches

    Additional notes from memory. My school was about 6-7 miles away and the school provided transport, the bus company had their garage another 3 miles west in another village about 1,000ft up. We had to walk to school; I think on 2 possibly 3 mornings but never on the way back. Would that happen today?

    hope you enjoy reading it.

    I’ve already made comments somewhere about the 1947 winter and the 1962-63 winter with data for where I worked, mostly actual temperatures throughout the period 28/12 to 28/02, I think.

    I’ll try and find some data for the 1986 February for both Manchester and RAF Valley (Anglesey), sorry no piccs of any of it.

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    Posted
  • Location: Brixton, South London
  • Location: Brixton, South London

    John many thanks for the read.

    The contrast between resilience in severe winters past and fear of travelling in much more benign recent winters is striking. It would be interesting to know when attitudes started to change. The other side of the coin is that BR and its predecessors seem to me to have taken obvious and foolhardy risks in running services that were all too likely to have been abandoned in drifting snow: whilst early forecasting was doubtless much less reliable than now, even 12-24 hours ahead, I find it difficult to believe that forecasts at that timeframe after say WW2 were insufficiently reliable for the railways to amend their timetables in advance.

    regards

    ACB

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    Posted
  • Location: Bedfordshire/Herts border 40m asl
  • Weather Preferences: Cold, crisp, calm and sunny
  • Location: Bedfordshire/Herts border 40m asl

    John thank you for your diary extract, it makes facinating reading.

    I chuckled when you said how the school bus still managed to get through to bring you home every day. Nowadays not only would the school bus be cancelled but the schools would all have closed too. Having observed the fiasco of the M11 in Suffolk, closed at the end of January 2003 because of about an inch and a half of snow, I do find myself wondering how soft and unable to cope with normal winter weather we now find ourselves as a society.

    Edited by Soaring Hawk
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    I lived through 3 of the 4 Feb CET's below zero but comparisons are difficult as I was living in a different part of Britain each time - ie, 1956 - Edinburgh; 1963 - Birmingham; 1986 - near York. However they all register, with sledging on the Pentland hills (I was 9 at the time) in '56, sliding on frozen ponds in '63 and seeing bus windows permanently (so it seemed) frozen up on the inside on my way to school in Small Heath, and the hedge and grass 'scorching' in 86 on the fields around Pocklington (relatively little snow that winter away from the east coast fringes so little to blanket and protect the ground. Great times, though I chiefly remember 62-63 for its sheer length and intensity (plus two great blizzards at the end of December and beginning of January) and the longest, heaviest - one and a half foot - continuous snowfall in January 1982 (when I was living in Gloucester) plus the lowest temperature I've ever encountered in that month of minus 15C - about 4 Fahrenheit.

    Add on Jan 12th 1987, the very cold spells (blizzards east of the Pennines) in 78-79, the polar low of Feb 69, and Feb 91 and I can't ever complain that I haven't experienced some of the best, ie wintriest, weather in my life-time. I am aware of a generation which has no real concept of what those days were like and only hope they will come round again. As yet, despite the GW issues. I see no reason why they can't, though they may become ever rarer.

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    it may have done as I did not possess a max min thermometer, so I simply recorded the value around 8 am and 4pm each day.

    checking the Finningley daily data shows this, in degrees F

    50 on the 5th

    49 on the 6th

    48 on the 8th

    52 on the 28th

    56 on the 29th

    so certainly a spell from 9-27th when it was nowhere near those values.

    the actual max temps from 9-27th inclusive were

    34, 32, 32, 40, 34, 29, 36, 35, 31, 32, 27, 31, 34, 32, 32, 32, 34, 36, 41

    so a pretty cold spell as the CET figures for that month bear out.

    I must admit that at the time it seemed cold but not record cold. But then the winters after 1947 were certainly considerably colder than anything in recent memory.

    The highest January mean was 5.3C in 1949, the next one was 1957 with 5.7C, the rest were below 5.0C and most below 3.0C

    February had 3 of 5.0C or more but 6 of below 4.0C and 2 below 2.0C.

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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

    Thanks John,

    A very interesting first hand account, it made me feel cold just reading it.

    The bit regarding the bus always being there to pick you up at night from school, I don’t think today’s kids would have to worry at all about the buz turning up to take them home, first of all, can you imagine kids of today walking to school in the first place in sub zero temperatures if it didn’t turn up. Second if we saw a repeat of anything resembling February 1956, the schools would close for the entire month anyway. :lol:

    Paul

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    still looking for 1986 data

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    Memories of February 1986 at RAF Valley (Anglesey) and comparisons with RAF Finningley

    February 1986 was rated the second coldest February of the 20th century with only 1947 colder.

    The mean for the month was 0.7C, avge max=3.6C; avge min=-2.1C

    1947 showed 1.9C and -2.8C, mean=-05C.

    Only 1895(Holyhead) had a lower mean temp for February in records back to the mid 19th century, using a mix of Holyhead and Valley. Both stations are within sight of the Irish Sea.

    In the long term of winter months it ranks as the fourth coldest month ever.

    There were 24 air frosts making it the joint highest in February with 1947. It had the lowest rainfall for any February at Valley at 6.9mm.

    Thus it is possible, I think, to do a comparison with the data at a low level inland station, namely RAF Finningley.

    The 1986 February temperature data for Finningley is

    Avge max=1.4C, avge min=-3.1C, mean=-0.9C, with air frost on 25 nights.

    I cannot find the snowfall returns but have discovered an article I wrote for a Station Commander about snowfalls from 1951 to December 1986. This shows that there was no snowfall of 1cm or more in February 1986 but not the number of days with snow.

    At Finningley snow lay on the ground for 11 days, falling on 16.

    Regarding snowfall and its effects that month, what I do recollect is going to a meeting, I’m not sure of the date, in London, overlooking Waterloo station.

    Nothing untoward happened until after Crewe station when the falling snow slowed our progress. After, possibly Milton Keynes station, at which there was trouble first of all in opening the carriage door then closing it, even worse followed as the train carried on fairly slowly into Euston station. With the main door not closed properly snow drifted into the area of the doors on both sides of the train and actually started a small drift! This in turn prevented the automatic door into the compartment area from closing, thus the carriage became very cold. Alighting from Euston, over a snow and ice covered step, I immediately went on to the underground and was unaware of the chaos in London until I surfaced at Waterloo. The station board had far more cancellations than trains running and moving outside one became aware of just how bitter it was with snow still falling. Our meeting was cut short at lunch time with people attempting to find out if any transport, air, train, coach, taxi was available to try and get them home. 3 for Scotland went straight to a hotel as there were no flights. Waterloo station was the most amazing sight. Our office looked out on the main tracks into the station and throughout the morning we counted less than half a dozen trains moving in or out! I rang my office to say I would not be back until sometime the next day. A friend offered to put me up at his house near Reading. Problem was trying to get there, a bus for part of the run, then we hitched a lift on an articulated truck into Reading. No taxies so we walked, in best shoes, as I had left a perfectly dry if cold Anglesey(so much for being a forecaster!), along the middle of a road to reach his house. His wife had put soup and sandwiches out for us which were very welcome.

    I eventually got home about tea time the next day.

    So February 1986 certainly ranks as a very cold month on Anglesey as indeed it does for most parts of England and Wales.

    I’ll try and put some more detail on the 1947 winter and also see if I can find the original post about the 1963 winter.

    Most people now look at the statistics on these 4 winters with awe, but to be honest, certainly the first 3, just seemed a bit colder than usual at the time.

    John

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
    I lived through 3 of the 4 Feb CET's below zero but comparisons are difficult as I was living in a different part of Britain each time - ie, 1956 - Edinburgh; 1963 - Birmingham; 1986 - near York. However they all register, with sledging on the Pentland hills (I was 9 at the time) in '56, sliding on frozen ponds in '63 and seeing bus windows permanently (so it seemed) frozen up on the inside on my way to school in Small Heath, and the hedge and grass 'scorching' in 86 on the fields around Pocklington (relatively little snow that winter away from the east coast fringes so little to blanket and protect the ground. Great times, though I chiefly remember 62-63 for its sheer length and intensity (plus two great blizzards at the end of December and beginning of January) and the longest, heaviest - one and a half foot - continuous snowfall in January 1982 (when I was living in Gloucester) plus the lowest temperature I've ever encountered in that month of minus 15C - about 4 Fahrenheit.

    Add on Jan 12th 1987, the very cold spells (blizzards east of the Pennines) in 78-79, the polar low of Feb 69, and Feb 91 and I can't ever complain that I haven't experienced some of the best, ie wintriest, weather in my life-time. I am aware of a generation which has no real concept of what those days were like and only hope they will come round again. As yet, despite the GW issues. I see no reason why they can't, though they may become ever rarer.

    thanks for that account Tony, where are you now as you do not have it in your avatar.

    I don't want another winter like any of those I experienced, a short blast of 4 or 5 days will do!

    ps

    still looking for info re 1962-63, its somewhere on my pc, indeed its somewhere on the Net Wx site?, making notes about 1947 at the mo.

    Edited by johnholmes
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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    here is the winter of 1962-63 from my memory bank!

    My memories of the 1962-63 winter.

    I was working as a weather observer at a Royal Canadian Air Force Base called RCAF Langar, a few miles south of Nottingham, in the Vale of Belvoir.

    My first recollection is that the late autumn was rather cold but beyond that I do not recall anything of note until the weekend before Christmas 1962. High pressure had settled over much of the country and it became quite cold with frost and then dense fog developing. By the late evening this fog had lifted and it was just very cold. I spent Xmas with my parents near Chesterfield and went to Sheffield on the Boxing Day to see Sheffield Wednesday play, or so I thought. The pitch was white over with frost (long before the days of underheating) and the match was called off. By evening it began to snow and that really was the start of that 'famous' winter. As the Excel file below shows the ground at my parents house remained snow covered (more than half cover) until xxxx and at Langar until xxxx.

    Travelling backwards and forwards on the old style double decker buses which just had a small heater just behind the driver was a nightmare. The so called heater was rarely on as the driver needed that heat to keep his windscreen clear of ice and frost, and probably himself warm. Sleeping at my parents with just two coal fires downstairs was, compared to the over the top central heating the Canadians had, a cold time. At Langar I slept with the window partly open with just one sheet on me. At home I often had more clothes on than during the day, including woolly hat, gloves and socks along with 2 hot water bottles!

    Some of the minimum temperatures had to be observed to be believed, certainly by the standards of today. Langar was in a slight dip in the Vale of Belvoir and it was not unusual for it to be quoted as the coldest place in Gt Britain. Just look at some of the values on consecutive nights.

    At Langar although we had snow cover for almost 2 months without break the depth was never very much, 5-10cm being the most ever from memory. However it was a different story on the very edge of the Derbyshire Peak at my parent's house. Nothing as bad in terms of depth or drifts as 1947(that is another story I could tell) but often over the tops of Wellington boots in level depth with drifts 4-6 feet deep.

    Really the story of cold is best illustrated by my copies of the daily records from RCAF Langar through that period.

    I hope you enjoy the read.

    Data for RCAF Langar for the 1962-1963 winters, with a comparison with 1947

    (temperatures are all in deg C)

    Langar is about 10 miles ese of Nottingham in a slight 'bowl' with minor hills all around it. The diary as such starts on December 26th 1962 and finishes at the end of February 1963.

    General notes

    The ground was snow covered continuously (Met Office definition for =/>half cover) for 44 days from 26.12.62 until 8.2.63

    (At my parent's house near Chesterfield, Derbyshire that was extended until 27th February,

    A total of 63 days).

    The ground at Langar was continuously frozen from 22nd December 1962 until 4th March 1963, a total of 63 days.

    There was an air frost on every night, apart from 4, between 22nd December 1962 and 4th March 1963. (The only nights without frost were; 5.6.28 and 29th January)

    There were 32 consecutive nights with frost from 1st February 1963 to 4th March 1963.

    And there was a continuous frost(air temperature constantly below 0C) from 1500Z on 18th January 1963 until 0900Z on 26th January 1963(186 hours); put another way, almost a WHOLE week!!

    General notes on rainfall:

    There was 3.73 inches of rain (and melted snow) from 1 October 1962 to 28 February 1963

    This = 38% of the average.

    Monthly figures for the start of the cold spell on 22nd December 1962

    the figures are directly from the RCAF Langar weather station diary

    Date min max mean

    22 -4.4 2.2 -1.1

    23 -6.1 0.6 -2.8

    24 -9.3 0.0 -4.7

    25 -11.8 -3.9 -7.9

    26 -11.1 2.2 -4.5

    27 -1.4 1.1 -0.2

    28 -7.7 -2.2 -5.0

    29 -5.1 -1.7 -3.4

    30 -1.7 0.0 -0.9

    31 -0.6 0.6 0.0

    Mean temp for 10 days = -3.0C

    Values for January 1963

    Date min max mean

    1 -0.1 0.7 0.3

    2 -1.3 -0.6 -1.0

    3 -0.7 0.5 -0.1

    4 -0.1 1.0 0.5

    5 0.6 1.1 0.9

    6 1.1 1.8 1.5

    7 -3.5 1.3 -1.1

    8 -5.7 0.7 -2.5

    9 -8.0 1.3 -3.4

    10 -6.6 1.5 -2.6

    11 -10.4 -5.0 -7.7

    12 -5.4 -3.3 -4.4

    13 -8.3 0.0 -4.2

    14 -1.4 2.8 0.7

    15 -7.7 2.3 -2.7

    16 -2.7 0.0 -1.4

    17 -9.2 -2.1 -5.7

    18 -13.8 0.9 -6.5

    19 -5.9 -0.3 -3.1

    20 -3.3 -0.8 -2.1

    21 -4.1 -1.4 -2.8

    22 -13.6 -3.4 -8.5

    23 -15.4 -3.3 -9.4

    24 -12.2 -5.6 -8.9

    25 -8.6 -0.6 -4.6

    26 -6.2 5.3 -0.5

    27 -3.9 2.3 -0.8

    28 0.5 2.4 1.5

    29 1.4 2.9 2.2

    30 0.1 1.3 0.7

    31 -1.7 2.5 0.4

    Mean temp for month = -2.4C

    Values for February

    Date min max mean

    1 -3.5 -0.7 -2.1

    2 -9.8 -3.5 -6.7

    3 -6.7 -4.1 -5.4

    4 -10.2 1.6 -4.3

    5 -8.4 0.2 -4.1

    6 -3.7 -0.7 -2.2

    7 -1.6 1.6 0.0

    8 0.0 2.9 1.5

    9 -1.7 2.9 0.6

    10 -1.4 1.7 0.2

    11 -1.8 0.6 -0.6

    12 -0.1 2.1 1.0

    13 -0.7 4.1 1.0

    14 -2.6 1.7 -0.5

    15 -0.1 1.2 0.6

    16 -1.9 0.4 -0.8

    17 -1.7 1.7 0.0

    18 -1.7 2.2 0.3

    19 -1.5 0.3 0.6

    20 -4.8 2.6 -1.1

    21 -3.9 4.1 0.1

    22 -2.1 2.8 0.4

    23 -2.8 1.9 -0.5

    24 -6.7 0.6 -3.1

    25 -9.8 2.2 -3.8

    26 -5.2 4.8 -0.2

    27 -4.6 2.8 -0.9

    28 -3.3 5.4 1.1

    Mean temp for month = -1.1C

    Mean temp for January and February = -1.7C

    Comparison of temperatures at Langar between 1947 and 1963

    1947 January avge min=-1.0 avge max=3.5 mean=1.3

    1963 January avge min=-5.0 avge max=0.2 mean=-2.4

    1947 February avge min=-4.2 avge max=1.5 mean=-2.3

    1963 February avge min=-3.7 avge max=1.8 mean=-0.9

    So for the two months being compared 1947 showed a mean temp of -0.5 and 1963 gave

    -1.7C

    I cannot get data for frosts and snow for 1947 but for 1963 these were;

    days with snow falling= 20 in Jan and 19 in Feb; lying snow=31 in Jan and 19 in Feb.

    Air frosts in January were 26 and 27 in February.

    John

    Edited by johnholmes
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  • 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

    Very interesting accounts, John. It would appear from your record of Feb' 1956 that my memory of the completely blocked road would have been around the 20th rather than mid-month; I think my dad may have kept diaries for that period, I'll see if my mother can hunt them out.

    I hadn't started keeping records during the winter of 1963 (unfortunately) but Feb' 1986 was an interesting month here, I'll post a summary when I get time.

    T.M

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  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    look forward to reading that TM.

    It was a snowy month with me at 450ft so it must have been even more so with you.

    look forward to the Times articles Mr D.

    I have to go to Chesterfiedl to try and get old photos from the derbyshire Times on any of the winters. That will be a mid winter trip I think.

    Just the one winter to post in then my 4 winters are all covered.

    Edited by johnholmes
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  • Location: Ponteland
  • Location: Ponteland

    Thanks very much for all the info John, I also lived through those fabled winters but regrettably never kept any records and have to rely on the old memory,I spent the winter of 56' at RAF Stafford and remember the cold and the snow only too well as the heating in the barracks was virtually non-existent.

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  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
    Thanks very much for all the info John, I also lived through those fabled winters but regrettably never kept any records and have to rely on the old memory,I spent the winter of 56' at RAF Stafford and remember the cold and the snow only too well as the heating in the barracks was virtually non-existent.

    hi mate

    glad you enjoyed the read so far.

    gosh, someone older than me, now that is a find on here!

    I've just got the one winter to input, 1947 and as I was only 7 coming up 8 its pure memory but certain things really stick in my mind about that winter, and I've got the RAF Finningley data to add facts.

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  • 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

    Thanks John, great to read and as you say, amazing minimum temperatures. Also those maximums are amazing by today’s standards, a tropical 5c on the 26th January was the highest, that would be classed as a cool day in January now.

    Paul

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  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    and so to the final instalment of the JH memories of what real winter is about.

    1947 this time

    memories_of_the_1947_winter.doc

    I wonder if we will ever again get winters like those I 'enjoyed'. The last severe one being over 20 years ago - february 1986.

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  • 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

    Here's a resume of the weather in Feb' 1986, the coldest month I've recorded in the last 45 years. The temp' exceeded 0c only twice during the month, on the 1st with a max' of 0.2c and on the 24th when the max' was 0.7c.

    1st; Overcast with freezing drizzle and snow grains and NE gale gusting to 62 mph. Max' 0.2c, min' -0.9c Snow depth, 14cm. 4cm of glaze and rime.

    2ndLight-moderate snow and f6-7 NE wind. Max' -0.2c. Min' -0.6c. Snow depth 25cm

    3rd;Thick freezing fog with light snow and freezing drizzle. Max' 0.0c, min' -1.0c Snow depth 27 cm

    4thThick freezing fog and drizzle with snow grains. 5cm-7cm of glaze and rime. Max' -0.7c. Min' -1.6c. Snow depth 27cm

    5th Periods of light-moderate snow, f5 NE wind. Max' -1.0c, min' -4.3c. Snow depth 31 cm

    6th Cloudy with drifting snow. Max' -2.8c, min' -5.5c. Snow depth 29cm

    7th Cloudy with light snow showers. Max' -2.7c, min' -4.3c. Snow depth 30cm

    8thSunny intervals and light snow showers. Max' -2.0c, min' -4.3c. Snow depth 32 cm

    9th Cloudy with light snow. Max' -1.1c, min' -4.2c. Snow depth 31 cm

    10th Thick freezing fog a.m. Sunny p.m. Max' -3.6c. Min' -8.3c. Snow depth 31 cm

    11th Cloudy and dry. Max' -1.5c, min' -5.5c. Snow depth 30cm

    12th Freezing fog. Max' -2.6c, min' -4.4c. Snow depth 30cm

    13th Sunny after early fog. Max' -0.4c. Min' -5.2c. Snow depth 30cm

    14th Light-moderate snow and f5 NE wind. max' -3.0c, min' -4.4c. Snow depth 29cm

    15th Dull and misty. Max' -2.1c, min' -3.8c. Snow depth 28cm

    16th Dull with light snow. Max' -1.9c, min' -3.1c. Snow depth 27cm

    17th Cloudy with very light snow. Max' -1.2c, min' -3.6c. Snow depth 27cm

    18th Dull with intermittent light snow. Max' -1.6c. min' -2.7c. Snow depth 26cm

    19th Sunny periods and light snow showers. Max' -1.2c, min' -4.2c. Snow depth 26cm

    20th Fog a.m. Sunny intervals and light snow flurries. Max' -1.1c, min' -5.3c. Snow depth 27cm

    21st Sunny until late afternoon then light snow. Max' -2.9c, min' -8.0c. Snow depth 26cm

    22nd Sunny. Max' -1.5c, min' -6.5c. Snow depth 26cm

    23rd Sunny a.m. Sunny intervals and light snow showers p.m Max' -2.6c, min' -5.6c. Snow depth 26cm

    24th Sunny. Max' 0.7c, min' -4.6c. Snow depth 25cm

    25th Sunny intervals and snow showers. Max' -1.8c, min' -4.7c. Snow depth 26cm

    26th Sunny after early snow showers. Max' -2.9c, min' -6.7c. Snow depth 27cm

    27th Sunny. Max' -1.8c, min' -6.0c. Snow depth 26cm

    28th Sunny. Max' -0.1c. Min' -3.3c. Snow depth 25cm.

    T.M

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