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Worst summer of the 1980s?


Sunny76
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Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
    30 minutes ago, Thundery wintry showers said:

    The assessment of the Manchester stats illustrates some of the subjectivity that goes into best/worst. 

    I guess this is an example of where best/worst is subjective to some extent even if you're working from the premise that warmest/driest/sunniest = best.  When I read those stats, I assessed 1987 as "worst" because I gave more weight to sunshine than temperature and rainfall (1985 was coolest and wettest, but sunshine was surprisingly just a little below average).

    I've checked out the 1980s summer stats for Waddington near Lincoln, and get the following: (anomalies/percent relative to 1951-80 average):

    1980:  Tmax -0.9, rainfall 147, sunshine 83

    1981: Tmax -0.1, rainfall 71, sunshine 96

    1982: Tmax +0.5, rainfall 139, sunshine 89

    1983: Tmax +2.0, rainfall 56, sunshine 112

    1984: Tmax +1.3, rainfall 76, sunshine 118

    1985: Tmax -1.2, rainfall 112, sunshine 96

    1986: Tmax -0.5, rainfall 93, sunshine 105

    1987: Tmax -1.2, rainfall 137, sunshine 77

    1988: Tmax -0.7, rainfall 123, sunshine 93

    1989: Tmax +2.1, rainfall 79, sunshine 138

    Thus I'd say depending on what weights you give to maximum temperature, sunshine and rainfall, "worst" would be either 1980 or 1987.  It was surprising to see that 1986 came out slightly drier and sunnier than average.  1981 was drier than average here too, albeit marginally cooler/cloudier than average.

    Thanks. 1983 and 1989 on an almost par.

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    Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam
    12 hours ago, Optimus Prime said:

    Table showing average maximum, rainfall and sunshine for June, July and August against the 1951-80 avg

    image.thumb.png.51b8f0fdc70ebb1850752b9f4e1c6f4d.png

    Clearly 1985 is the worst. 

     

    Here's a downside of using rainfall

    August 1981: 140mm at Manchester Airport

    Wow that was a wet month, at first glance

    Then you look at the rain days......only 8 days out of 31.   23 days recorded no rainfall at all.  The large rainfall total masks that actually for the bulk of the month, it was dry. 2/3rds of that August's total rainfall fell in a few hours.

    Another example, Cardiff Airport: 90mm of rainfall recorded during August 1995, 85mm fell in a few hours on the 2nd but they were 26 days where no rain was recorded.

     

    That's why I prefer rain days over rainfall

    Edited by Weather-history
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    Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam
    11 hours ago, damianslaw said:

    Backs up my comment. 1985 coldest, also wettest, oddly though the sunniest.

     .

     

    Interestingly, Manchester Airport was far wetter for summer 1987 than 1985

    Summer 1985: 208mm

    Summer 1987: 346mm

    208mm for a summer does not sound a lot to me.  August 2004 recorded 184mm for the Airport (317mm for the summer of 2004)

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    Posted
  • Location: Back in Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)
  • Location: Back in Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)
    15 hours ago, damianslaw said:

    Thanks. 1983 and 1989 on an almost par.

    different summers gives different effects in different parts of the country..for example 1983 was a warm easterly summer ..1989 was a warm southerly summer..meaning the summer of 1983 was warmer in the west than the east ..for example TWS uses near Lincoln (east) which shows 1989 just edges 1983 for temps and sunshine..using Exeter Airport (west) records for the 2 summers shows 1983 at 17.6c with 71.7mm rain ...1989 17.1c with 120.3mm of rain couldn't find sunshine figures but would assume by the fact 1983 is much drier would have been sunnier also.

    Interestingly the warmest summers in Exeter i could see are 

    1995 = 17.9c

    1976 = 17.8c

    1983 = 17.6c

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    Posted
  • Location: G.Manchester
  • Location: G.Manchester
    14 hours ago, Weather-history said:

    Here's a downside of using rainfall

    August 1981: 140mm at Manchester Airport

    Wow that was a wet month, at first glance

    Then you look at the rain days......only 8 days out of 31.   23 days recorded no rainfall at all.  The large rainfall total masks that actually for the bulk of the month, it was dry. 2/3rds of that August's total rainfall fell in a few hours.

    Another example, Cardiff Airport: 90mm of rainfall recorded during August 1995, 85mm fell in a few hours on the 2nd but they were 26 days where no rain was recorded.

     

    That's why I prefer rain days over rainfall

    Better to look at data at a more granular level but then where do you stop? By hour, by minute (if available) but it's a really good point. Thanks for raising that one. 

     

     

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    Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
    1 hour ago, Optimus Prime said:

    Better to look at data at a more granular level but then where do you stop? By hour, by minute (if available) but it's a really good point. Thanks for raising that one. 

     

     

    Agree the figures in themselves can mask the reality on the ground. In summer particularly you could end up with a very wet month thanks to two intense downpours and the rest of the month stays dry. Conversely you might see a drier than average month that yields many wet days with showers or spells of light rain. The latter month will feel a much wetter month than the former.

    Temperatures are the same, a hot month might come courtesy of a very hot 7 day spell set against three weeks or so of just average or slightly above average temps. 

    Edited by damianslaw
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