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Sunny76

When will the summer storms arrive?

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When I say summer storms, I mean the ones that last for an hour, and not just the odd rumble.

My guess is, we will see the first storms arriving towards the end of May or early June, when the first hot and humid spell sets in.

Another thing I’ve noticed is, summer storms have started to increase a little since 2016, and last year had a few, the main one in July. 

Are we returning to the period when thunderstorms used to be more frequent in the summers of the 1980s and early 90s?

And why have we been through a number of summers with a low amount of storms during the past decade? 

Looking back at the weather records, 1980-84 seems to stand out as a period for high frequency of summer thunderstorms. 

If we are in a similar weather pattern now(entering colder winters), are we to expect a return to more summer storms. They seem more common during years where cold winters are followed by unsettled summers mixed with hot and cold periods.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Sunny76 said:

When I say summer storms, I mean the ones that last for an hour, and not just the odd rumble.

My guess is, we will see the first storms arriving towards the end of May or early June, when the first hot and humid spell sets in.

Another thing I’ve noticed is, summer storms have started to increase a little since 2016, and last year had a few, the main one in July. 

Are we returning to the period when thunderstorms used to be more frequent in the summers of the 1980s and early 90s?

And why have we been through a number of summers with a low amount of storms during the past decade? 

Looking back at the weather records, 1980-84 seems to stand out as a period for high frequency of summer thunderstorms. 

If we are in a similar weather pattern now(entering colder winters), are we to expect a return to more summer storms. They seem more common during years where cold winters are followed by unsettled summers mixed with hot and cold periods.

I have to disagree with you on this one. The Summers of 2013 and 2014, at least in Essex, were far stormier than any Summers since. July 2014 was incredibly stormy.

Anyway, this post from Terminal Moraine may be of interest to you:

 

Edited by Relativistic

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Season already started here, last Saturday. Been fairly constant on the storm front here the last few years. It seems some years the east and southeast have a good year, and others not, but here it's been fairly constant with a few plume storms each year.

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London has been lacking in storms, but I do remember July 18th last summer and the thunderstorm during the June referendum 2016. 

To the poster above mentioning 2014 and 13. I forgot about those, but both summers had quite a few thundery downpours, especially 2014. 

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Manchester had some good storms in both July 2014 and on July 1st 2015 both happened after sunset during darkness which enhances the fun :D 

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There's been quite a well documented decline in thunder frequency in the southern Home Counties since the 1980s, which may imply that we've been getting less of the big continental imports in recent years.  I'm not sure of the reasons for this, especially as the decline doesn't appear to have affected all parts of the country - the Newcastle area in particular appears to have seen an increase in thunderstorms since the 1990s.

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Posted (edited)

The decline in thunderstorms here has gone hand in hand with most warm spells in recent years tending to have an easterly component to the wind. Quite often storms approach from the south or south-west but are promptly killed off by the onshore breeze. The same onshore breeze also keeps maxima down, which is probably why we havent reached 30C for 17 years now.

We have seen occasional storms as you get every summer, but the last direct hit was in August 2012.

I'll have to check my stats to see if there has been a notable decline, but it certainly feels that way.

Edited by reef

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Posted (edited)

I have no local stats on thunderstorms, though I can't recall a single year without an overhead storm at least once. Since 2013, August has tended to be the most reliable month for storms - and particularly around the 22nd and 23rd. 2013, 2015 and 2017 all had storms on the 22nd or 23rd of August. Just a freaky coincidence I'm sure but interesting nevertheless. 

Near misses are obviously more common, such as the week before last when a thunderstorm just missed here to the west (close enough that the thunder was about 4 seconds after the lightning, and it did rain briefly).

I actually remember one thunderstorm when I was in secondary school, at night, and people were talking about it the day after - which indicates that it must have been reasonably intense. Have no clue what year it was though. Early 00s seems a good guess.

Edited by cheese

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Storms...what are those then?

Thunder days have declined to virtually zilch here.

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6 hours ago, 38.5*C said:

Manchester had some good storms in both July 2014 and on July 1st 2015 both happened after sunset during darkness which enhances the fun :D 

Yes but that was it. Those months weren't exactly thunderfests.

Like I said in the decline in thunder thread

"Another thing, I'm struggling to remember the last time we had a day with more than one thunderstorm? What I mean is a thundery shower or storm then an interval followed by another one.

I recall a few occasions in the 90s this happening. Late June 1990, we had three separate thunderstorms/thundery showers, one Saturday afternoon and evening, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995... Some of these occasions, we had a storm some time in the morning and another in the late afternoon/evening or night.

These days, we get one storm and that's it, we don't get a second bite of the cherry."

 

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Posted (edited)

1992 was one that stands out for a number of storms in 24 hours. Late May had a night time one that year, during a hot spell, and we had a cluster around mid July. On a Monday evening, and into the night, then another storm moved in during the Tuesday afternoon. 

This was in the London area. It was at this point that summer 1992 went downhill, after starting off on a hot note.

Edited by Sunny76

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Last year we had a few storms during the night of July 18th. Lightning and distant thunder around 10-11pm, and then another storm moved in during the night. It lasted for more than an hour. 

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