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Best and worst winters


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Best winters I can’t remember but heard of from my uncle.

Best would be 1947, as my grandmother told me how it didn’t stop snowing between late January and late March of 47.

Winter of 62/63,

The cold of January and February 1979.

81/82 

 

Worst ones from my family’s perspective.

1980/81. According to them, Christmas Day in London was mild, and the turkey went off, as they left it out to defrost during the day. We were visiting friends for the dinner, and by the time we were dropped off at home in the evening, the turkey was off.

Not sure if a mild Christmas was to blame.

1987/88

The very mild and sunny Christmas Day. My family were moaning about how horrible it was to have spring like weather on Christmas Day, but I vaguely remember enjoying the unusual weather. It was at least dry and sunny with clear skies.

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My ratings of winters in my lifetime 1985 to 1987 - No direct memories of these winters due to my age but records suggest they may have been quite good for snow. 1988 to 1990 - Not very good

1962/63 the best winter if i have got the year right(only about 8 at the time) .Living at the edge of the beach near Buckie that winter with 6 foot drifts on the main road outside the door and  a foot

I'll just comment on 'best' as in coldest/snowiest. My age allows me to have first hand knowledge of both 1947 and 1962-63 so, as you might expect, nothing since compares to either. A long time a

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On 12/09/2020 at 21:16, I remember Atlantic 252 said:

90-91, 93-94, 95-96, 96-97, 97-98, winters of childhood I can remember with snow

97/98? 

Ok it had a little bit more than the following two (or 91/2 and 92/3), ie it had a little bit, but give 94/5 that last place surely! Even if it didn't have much till March.

 

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11 hours ago, Sunny76 said:

 

1980/81. According to them, Christmas Day in London was mild, and the turkey went off, as they left it out to defrost during the day. We were visiting friends for the dinner, and by the time we were dropped off at home in the evening, the turkey was off.

Not sure if a mild Christmas was to blame.

 

A few locations that Christmas in the north and west reported snow or at least you would have won your bet on a White Christmas at locations such as Manchester and Glasgow 

 

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3 hours ago, Weather-history said:

A few locations that Christmas in the north and west reported snow or at least you would have won your bet on a White Christmas at locations such as Manchester and Glasgow 

 

Yes, but I think south of Birmingham was a different picture.

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I have to disagree with this post

1982 this winter can hold it's own with 63, 47 in terms of snow depth and snow longevity and extreme temps - an extraordinary winter that I fear may never be repeated again now that the Azores High messes our weather patterns so much

 

I doubt London was any colder/snowy than the Derbyshire/ Cheshire area and 47, 62-63 were way above 82.

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5 hours ago, johnholmes said:

 

I doubt London was any colder/snowy than the Derbyshire/ Cheshire area and 47, 62-63 were way above 82.

Yes, now I was too young to remember 82 in the south but the stats suggest that even 09/10 was a harder winter than that one.  Didnt 82 become milder after mid January 

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I always remember February 1986 as being the most Easterly month with a lot of snow here. Then January 1987 for that blizzard which left snow for weeks on end here. 

December 2010 was also excellent in terms of cold, but snow here was disappointing. 

Agree with February becoming a disappointment in recent years although 2018 wasnt too bad at the end. 

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I was lucky enough to have been around for the winters of 46-47 and 62-63, my memories of tehwinter of 46-47 were of persistant heavy snowfalls  from mid January until early March,this occuring within 3 miles of the east coast. 62-63 lasted longer but having moved 12 miles to Newcastle for some reason I expected bigger snowfalls, this was not the case ,the snow and cold lasted longer but the severest weather appeared to be reserved for the South and South East of the UK.

I must mention winter 78-9 which as far as I can recall ran the 46-47 winter very close with regards to the copious snowfalls we experiences especially the falls of 13-14th of February and 13-14th March, these we indeed memorable.

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1 hour ago, Rollo said:

I was lucky enough to have been around for the winters of 46-47 and 62-63, my memories of tehwinter of 46-47 were of persistant heavy snowfalls  from mid January until early March,this occuring within 3 miles of the east coast. 62-63 lasted longer but having moved 12 miles to Newcastle for some reason I expected bigger snowfalls, this was not the case ,the snow and cold lasted longer but the severest weather appeared to be reserved for the South and South East of the UK.

I must mention winter 78-9 which as far as I can recall ran the 46-47 winter very close with regards to the copious snowfalls we experiences especially the falls of 13-14th of February and 13-14th March, these we indeed memorable.

In 78-79 the North Pennines had two metres and more of lying snow and it barely thawed at all between Christmas and late March.
It was striking looking across from the NYMoors how white the distant fells around Tow Law were, when it had started to go quickly here through April.

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I have mused on a 16 year cycle of severe winter weather beginning in 1947.

The next event was 1963 with 1979 after that.

The theory falls apart at that point because the next event should have been 1995 and as far as I recall that was not a severe winter.

Moving forward the next event in the cycle should have been 2011 - following December 2010 - but of course the severe weather tailed off before January began!

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2 hours ago, SummerShower said:

Yes, now I was too young to remember 82 in the south but the stats suggest that even 09/10 was a harder winter than that one.  Didnt 82 become milder after mid January 

I think you’re right. December 1981, and the first half of January 1982 were very cold, but the latter part of January and February 1982 were milder than average. That year also had a warm sunny spring. It was also the last time London would get a really cold winter until 1984/85. 

El Nino affected the second half of 1982, which produced very mild or even warm conditions across North America, giving many northern cities like Chicago and Toronto a Christmas Day heatwave.

Think a 1981/82 spell is achievable, but I highly doubt a 1947 or 63 will ever happen again. A week of heavy snow like 1979, 82, 87, 91, or anything we saw between 2009-2012 will be happen again.

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On 20/09/2020 at 06:27, philglossop said:

I always remember February 1986 as being the most Easterly month with a lot of snow here. Then January 1987 for that blizzard which left snow for weeks on end here. 

cant be Jan 87..after the cold it warmed up nicely thereafter with highs around 9c and lows of 7c for much of the rest of the month

https://www.meteociel.fr/climatologie/obs_villes.php?code2=3827&mois=1&annee=1987

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On 20/09/2020 at 13:21, SummerShower said:

Yes, now I was too young to remember 82 in the south but the stats suggest that even 09/10 was a harder winter than that one.  Didnt 82 become milder after mid January 

In South Wales the winter of 1982 comes 3rd behind 1947 and 63 for extreme cold and snow depths, 2010 doesn't come close and that's a fact for that part of the world.

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On 20/09/2020 at 07:21, johnholmes said:

I have to disagree with this post

1982 this winter can hold it's own with 63, 47 in terms of snow depth and snow longevity and extreme temps - an extraordinary winter that I fear may never be repeated again now that the Azores High messes our weather patterns so much

 

I doubt London was any colder/snowy than the Derbyshire/ Cheshire area and 47, 62-63 were way above 82.

I am talking about South Wales specifically.

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December 2010 perfect winter month 

December 2009 extremely cold but without same snow depth as 2010

December 1981 extremely cold and deep snow but not as long lasting as 2010

December 2000 not a particularly cold month here but a spectacular Christmas to New Year with deep snow and very low temps

December 1995 as with December 2000

 

So in summary the best winter weather in my location is always in December. Definitely cold at other times but it’s December that hits the bullseye most often here.

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For depth of cold a tie in between 24-31 Dec 95, and 17-26 Dec 10. Both periods brought sub zero maxima throughout, minima in 95 was colder than 10, but 2010 lasted a couple of days longer.

For amount of snowfall, 5/6 Feb 96, 18 inches fell not bettered since and probably have to go way back to the likes of 1947 since we had such depths in a single fall.

 

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From memory (BEST):

1990-1991 - Snow before Christmas, and of course *that* February

1995-1996 - The cold never gave in, and we had a fair bit of snow in February that year.

1996-1997 - The snow after Christmas

2000-2001 - It snowed after Christmas that year, and I am sure it was on and off as I remember my brother being born in the middle of January.

2008-2009 - The intro of what was to come

2009-2010 - Best winter I've ever experienced! Perfect in every way.

2012-2013 - Unpopular opinion, but it felt like a proper winter 

 

WORST:

I think most of the recent ones, mainly 2019-2020, 2015-2016 and 2006-2007. I'd put 2010-11 down as a disappointment as the cold just vanished come mid January. 

Bare in mind, I was born late 1984 - my parents mentioned about that three year golden run for winters. 1985-1986 does seem to be forgotten it seems and 1984-1985. It seems 1986-87 takes the limelight for that memorable January for some reason.

 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, NeilN said:

From memory (BEST):

1990-1991 - Snow before Christmas, and of course *that* February

1995-1996 - The cold never gave in, and we had a fair bit of snow in February that year.

1996-1997 - The snow after Christmas

2000-2001 - It snowed after Christmas that year, and I am sure it was on and off as I remember my brother being born in the middle of January.

2008-2009 - The intro of what was to come

2009-2010 - Best winter I've ever experienced! Perfect in every way.

2012-2013 - Unpopular opinion, but it felt like a proper winter 

 

WORST:

I think most of the recent ones, mainly 2019-2020, 2015-2016 and 2006-2007. I'd put 2010-11 down as a disappointment as the cold just vanished come mid January. 

Bare in mind, I was born late 1984 - my parents mentioned about that three year golden run for winters. 1985-1986 does seem to be forgotten it seems and 1984-1985. It seems 1986-87 takes the limelight for that memorable January for some reason.

 

 

 

i agree apart from the blistering cold and snow for about 4/5 days winter 86-87 was kind of non descript and for me comes third in those trilogy of winters...hard to separate between 84-85 and 85-86 as to which comes top

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2 minutes ago, cheeky_monkey said:

i agree apart from the blistering cold and snow for about 4/5 days winter 86-87 was kind of non descript and for me comes third in those trilogy of winters...hard to separate between 84-85 and 85-86 as to which comes top

It seems odd doesn't it? I understand 1947, 1963, 1979, 2010 (both start and end) but surely those two deserve their limelight? I would love to experience a February like 1986 in my lifetime so I can say I have experienced it. I'd love the winter like 84-85 as it seemed perfect from people's memories! 

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2015-16, 2016-17 and 19-20, all very poor for snowfall, but we at least managed a day of snow cover, alas we never in 13-14, that one diabolical in every way, wet wet wet, mild, mild, mild, storm, storm,storm. Barely anything settled or cold. 

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