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Will This Winter be like 1947 / 1963 ?

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The short answer is almost certainly not. But I thought it might be an idea and fun to have a place to put the speculation and "signs" we see that stretch the definition of the term tenuous to put it mildly, and save the model threads and other "serious discussion" threads being clogged up by them! 

So let's kick it off.....one prerequisite of a severe winter in the UK seems to be a period of strong high pressure giving an easterly flow over or to the east of the UK in the early part of October...... in evidence m'lud I present.....

9th October 1946
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6th October 1954

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8th October 1962

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5th October 2015

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It's On!!!    :):)

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Actually though it must be remembered that despite being equally famous those two Winters were a bit different. 1946/47 was more famous for being exceptionally snowy whereas 1962/63 was more famous for being exceptionally cold (though both were cold and snowy of course). But it must be remembered they were each unique in their own way. In fact 1946/47 didn't get to its most extreme thase until January, whereas 1962/63 got going in late December. As for this coming Winter I very much doubt we're going to get anything to rival those two. But then again any such Winter is unlikely to be realised until either it's happening or afterwards. Such is the rare nature of such Winters.

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I reckon the closest we have come to approaching something similar to winter 1946-47 since that winter was 1985-86. The coldest spell of that winter started late January and lasted to the start of March. 

It reached close to the cold levels of the winter 1946-47 with that February and the easterly domination but was nowhere near with the snow levels. 

 

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21 minutes ago, Weather-history said:

I reckon the closest we have come to approaching something similar to winter 1946-47 since that winter was 1985-86. The coldest spell of that winter started late January and lasted to the start of March. 

It reached close to the cold levels of the winter 1946-47 with that February and the easterly domination but was nowhere near with the snow levels. 

 

I find your in-depth knowledge of past winter months very useful and educational. Yes February 86 was severely cold at the depth of this spell. A CET of -1.1. These months are particularly rare. It's like rolling a dice 6 times, say 3,4 are average and 6 is severe cold and 1 is very mild. This month had nearly all the 6's. But the snow levels are a different set of dice rolls completely.

Edited by Matthew Wilson
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Just now, Matthew Wilson said:

I find your in-depth knowledge of past winter months very useful and educational. Yes February 86 was severely cold at the depth of this spell. A CET of -1.1. These months are particularly rare. It's like rolling a dice 6 times, say 3,4 are average and 6 is severe cold and 1 is very mild. This month had nearly all the 6's.

There have been 8 sub zero CET Februaries and half of them have been since WWII. 

Before 1947, there were only 4 sub zero CET Februaries. That's quite a startling fact, 4 in nearly 300 years pre 1945, 4 in the last 70 years. 

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I think it was you WH who said we haven't had a very cold February since 1991. Though I think 2009 was reasonably cold as was 2010. I think it was also you a few years back who pointed out that in recent years we've had a very cold November and December (2010), a very cold January (also 2010 in the previous Winter) and even a very cold March (2013). February though is the one Winter month which has failed so far to obtain a very cold CET in the post 2008 era. 

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45 minutes ago, Walsall Wood Snow said:

I think it was you WH who said we haven't had a very cold February since 1991. Though I think 2009 was reasonably cold as was 2010. I think it was also you a few years back who pointed out that in recent years we've had a very cold November and December (2010), a very cold January (also 2010 in the previous Winter) and even a very cold March (2013). February though is the one Winter month which has failed so far to obtain a very cold CET in the post 2008 era. 

Yes, it was me.

February 1996 is often forgotten about apart from the snow. Colder than 2010.

 

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You will find that most severe winters are very different to eachother so it is not always easy to compare.1947 was generally very snowy but having a cold december most of the snow didnt arrive until late january in the south and early feb in northern areas but very frequent snow occured from then right up until the 3rd week in march with constant east winds,cloudy in the main and very low maxima.1963 whereas had much lower minima in general but higher maxima with heavy snow arriving on boxing day and lasting until the end of feb but lacked the constant east winds and frequency of snow with lots of sunny clear days.I guess we all have different views on which we would prefer but i wasnt about to witness either.What i do know however is the period of winter from end jan 1986 which was similar to that of 1947 felt far colder than that of 2010 due to the biting east winds so am guessing that 1947 would have felt worse.I have also asked a few old folks around here which was worse,2 people said 1947 the other said neither as 1940 was worse !

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December 2010 and February 1963 had similar level of cold -0.7 CET

 

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Edited by Matthew Wilson
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8 hours ago, Matthew Wilson said:

December 2010 and February 1963 had similar level of cold -0.7 CET

 

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Late November-Christmas 2010 contained the coldest 31 day CET period since 1963. 

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2 minutes ago, Weather-history said:

Late November-Christmas 2010 contained the coldest 31 day CET period since 1963. 

surprising as late 9th to early 16th Dec here were quite mild, with a full thaw by end of 10th

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You'll will find 'IRA252' that it's 31 days combined gave the average temp of 0.7c but yes there was a few days in December 2010 that turned Mild'ish but come on most of that month was truly exceptional, most days were never above freezing some nights in pershore got as low as -17 -18 :cold:

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4 minutes ago, Dancerwithwings said:

You'll will find 'IRA252' that it's 31 days combined gave the average temp of 0.7c but yes there was a few days in December 2010 that turned Mild'ish but come on most of that month was truly exceptional, most days were never above freezing some nights in pershore got as low as -17 -18 :cold:

was great but disappointed with the Atlantic breaking through with a whimper on 27th, and apart from a snow to rain setup on Jan 7th '11, that was virtually for the south winter over, I had no snow after Jan 7th

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6 minutes ago, I remember Atlantic 252 said:

was great but disappointed with the Atlantic breaking through with a whimper on 27th, and apart from a snow to rain setup on Jan 7th '11, that was virtually for the south winter over, I had no snow after Jan 7th

I remember this really well. 27th is my birthday and we all went to the pub. My football team lost and I knew snow was forecast later that evening . Just before it started massive icicles from the bridge and lampposts started to fall quite dangerously and regular then a few snow flakes and then it peed down with rain . Not my best birthday .:sorry:

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Just now, Mark wheeler said:

I remember this really well. 27th is my birthday and we all went to the pub. My football team lost and I knew snow was forecast later that evening . Just before it started massive icicles from the bridge and lampposts started to fall quite dangerously and regular then a few snow flakes and then it peed down with rain . Not my best birthday .:sorry:

another Dec b'day unreal, Dec most common, Nov 2nd most common month for birthdays, so many people in these 2 months, Valentines day, ppl having good time

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December 1981 was colder here than dec 2010 with averages of -1.0 and -0.7 respectively with february 1986 the coldest since 1963 at -1.1

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Winter 46/47 several years before my time but having read past weather logs and some weather diarys and my parents memories i would say a very interesting winter ,with snow from many different synoptic set ups ,oh how i wish .

And of course in early March 1947 the big blizzard with fronts gradually becoming stuck across central areas ,something for everyone bring it on .62/63  I Remember in Bristol the early evening started Wet ,it had been a wet day ,then came the sleet followed by snowflakes Massive flakes ,this fell all night followed by more during early morning [sorry night of boxing day into 27th ] then a slight thaw set in untill 29th dec ,Low pressure over biscay sucked in cold air again with a raging blizzard ,very deep snow with many places isolated .several more moderate falls occured in our area but heavier falls elsewhere ,but generally high pressure clear nights and bitter .December 2010 on paper yes v cold but only two light to moderate falls in our area ,but some parts did well some virtually zilch .I found winter 78/,79 delivered a good bit of snow .of course for me February 18th 1978 here in somerset the great blizzard , And 1981/82 several good snowy spells with one very heavy fall in January .Also the winter of 1939/40 cold and snowy , take care all .

 

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Leicester City have more chance of winning the Champions League

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One can hope so. Unless you belong to the mild gang led by the infamous Knocks. :shok: 

I think we're due an exceptionally cold February I believe 2012 was the last cold one here - a sustained cold assault from the north and east from December to late Febuary would be wonderful. If only I could script it. :whistling: 

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I know this thread is a bit tongue in cheek, but nobody could say YES at this time, and NO is a more realistic answer. Though as always we'll know the answer (well really quite some time before then) on 1st March 2017.

Edited by Walsall Wood Snow
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1 hour ago, Changing Skies. said:

One can hope so. Unless you belong to the mild gang led by the infamous Knocks. :shok: 

I think we're due an exceptionally cold February I believe 2012 was the last cold one here - a sustained cold assault from the north and east from December to late Febuary would be wonderful. If only I could script it. :whistling: 

Cold Februaries have been lacking.. Feb 2010 was chilly but that's about it I think. Feb 2012 was a case of 'close but no cigar' - some very cold nights, and some decent snow events, but we missed out on the core of the cold that affected much of Europe including Benelux and northern France. The month also ended on a very mild note with widespread high teens.

Edited by cheese

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90's and earlier cold Feb's were guaranteed, so was snow and easterlies, but since 2000 the m/e has seen an increase in Atlantic air, Feb I think the month that's changed the most

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8 hours ago, legritter said:

Winter 46/47 several years before my time but having read past weather logs and some weather diarys and my parents memories i would say a very interesting winter ,with snow from many different synoptic set ups ,oh how i wish .

And of course in early March 1947 the big blizzard with fronts gradually becoming stuck across central areas ,something for everyone bring it on .62/63  I Remember in Bristol the early evening started Wet ,it had been a wet day ,then came the sleet followed by snowflakes Massive flakes ,this fell all night followed by more during early morning [sorry night of boxing day into 27th ] then a slight thaw set in untill 29th dec ,Low pressure over biscay sucked in cold air again with a raging blizzard ,very deep snow with many places isolated .several more moderate falls occured in our area but heavier falls elsewhere ,but generally high pressure clear nights and bitter .December 2010 on paper yes v cold but only two light to moderate falls in our area ,but some parts did well some virtually zilch .I found winter 78/,79 delivered a good bit of snow .of course for me February 18th 1978 here in somerset the great blizzard , And 1981/82 several good snowy spells with one very heavy fall in January .Also the winter of 1939/40 cold and snowy , take care all .

 

The first half of that March was bitterly cold, I think the CET was comfortably below zero until around the 15th, when the thaw arrived. I think I'm right in saying that it was quite an abrupt shift, with it turning from very cold to very mild within a few days or so, so that severe first half is somewhat lost in an unspectacular looking overall final CET for the month.

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March 1947 finished with a CET of 3.6C, which is still notably cold. But the first half was indeed below zero (not many Marches to which that applies). In fact early March recorded lower temperatures than February and may have even had heavier snowfalls (the 5th and the 8th had particularly heavy falls).

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