Jump to content
Cold?
Local
Radar
Snow?

Failed channel low forecast?


Recommended Posts

Hi guys,

I’m trying to pin down a really vague memory from the early 90s - I’d guess maybe 1993 or 94 - of a failed snow event where the tv forecasts got it totally wrong.

I remember seeing the ITN weather one evening and them forecasting snow for London from a system going through the channel. I went to bed excited and woke up to - nothing. Not a flake. I remember the next day the forecasters explaining the system had gone further south than anticipated, into France.

Can anyone shed some light on this? Are there any forecasts etc? 

Edited by Flakey
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Spotted a post you think may be an issue? Please help the team by reporting it.
Posted
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl
  • Weather Preferences: obviously snow!
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl

    nearly always happens, these type of systems trend South with every model run, normally ends up S of M4 event, where as a few days before, GFS especially is way out and has ppn (snow) as far north as Manchester

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
    5 minutes ago, Flakey said:

    Hi guys,

    I’m trying to pin down a really vague memory from the early 90s - I’d guess maybe 1993 or 94 - of a failed snow event where the tv forecasts got it totally wrong.

    I remember seeing the ITN weather one evening and them forecasting snow for London from a system going through the channel. I went to bed excited and woke up to - nothing. Not a flake. I remember the next day the forecasters explaining the system had gone further south than anticipated, into France.

    Can anyone shed some light on this? Are there any forecasts etc? 

    Without looking back at the archives, I can't hazard any guess of when such an event happened. Winter 93/94 brought episodic cold at times, more so in the north, there were a few snowfalls at times.

    Winter 94/95 was on the most side wet and mild. Most likely it happened in 93/94. Mid Feb 94 brought an easterly so it could have been then.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Shrewsbury
  • Location: Shrewsbury

    Was it the end of Feb 1993? I remember that weekend with the forecasts of widespread heavy snow from a northerly setup, in the end it gave about 5 minutes of snow round here. I think some places along the East coast got a cm or two but that was it. It was a terrible forecast. Particularly at the end of the second successive virtually snowless winter.

    Looking at the charts it wasn't a Channel low involved, it was one diving down the North Sea that ended up in Denmark rather than England, though the uppers were -10 the precipitation seems to have all gone too far east. A day or two later the low was around the Alps.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    8 minutes ago, Summer of 95 said:

    Was it the end of Feb 1993? I remember that weekend with the forecasts of widespread heavy snow from a northerly setup, in the end it gave about 5 minutes of snow round here. I think some places along the East coast got a cm or two but that was it. It was a terrible forecast. Particularly at the end of the second successive virtually snowless winter.

    Looking at the charts it wasn't a Channel low involved, it was one diving down the North Sea that ended up in Denmark rather than England, though the uppers were -10 the precipitation seems to have all gone too far east. A day or two later the low was around the Alps.

    Maybe that was it. The timing certainly sounds about right.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: SE London
  • Location: SE London

    Am pretty sure that was the event when Michael Fish said on the 5:55pm Radio 4 forecast that evening, ‘if it’s not snowing now where you are, it will be soon.’ Was a nailed on event yet woke up to the usual green lawn and wet roofs. So disappointing. 

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

     

     

     

    When the winds developed with a more easterly component, I don't think  the snow showers were as widespread as suggested in the forecasts for the SE.

    We had snow showers when it was supposed to be mostly dry! There were far more snow showers inland than predicted, Birmingham got 4cm. 

    We had snow showers on the Saturday, Sunday and the Monday.

    Edited by Weather-history
    ,
    • Like 2
    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl

    Remember the snow showers accompanied by the bitter NE wind - vivid memories of that day, it was a Saturday. I think largely because there had been very little snow since Feb 91, one snowfall early January 93 from memory, and perhaps a light snowfall or two winter 91/92 - very light if anything.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    Yes, I think the north of England had a day of wintry showers on 20 December 1991 and some frontal snow on 17 February 1992, both of which had lying snow to near sea level for a time, but that was it.  Rain turned to snow as it spread east on 4 January 1993 and there were snow showers on the 11th/12th associated with the Braer storm (and very disruptive snowstorms further north across the Scottish Lowlands).  October 1992 had some unusually early snowfalls in places but not much on the ground at low levels.  Otherwise the winters of 1991/92 and 1992/93 were pretty much snowless until 27 February 1993.

    Regarding Flakey's recollections, the one thing that casts doubt on the suggestion of late Feb/early Mar 1993 was that the heavy snow for the SE was forecast to come from showers off the North Sea rather than from a system moving through the English Channel.  I see there is a mention of a system moving in from the SE on the 1st on the 28 February forecasts, but it still doesn't match up with the recollection.  Mac_SE's recollections sound like they probably were this event though.  Memories do sometimes play tricks so it's nonetheless possible that this might be the event that Flakey is remembering.

    It won't have been 15 February 1994 as London definitely got snow on that occasion, but it's possible that it could have been overnight 21/22 February 1994, when a frontal system passed just to the south of London giving snow to Kent and Sussex.  It's not played up much on the BBC forecasts (Michael Fish had the system down as very marginal as to whether it got as far north as London) but ITN could possibly have over-egged it.  Fronts did push in from the south-west late on the 22nd and over the following few days, giving widespread snow in the Midlands and northern England, but turned quickly to rain in the south.

    image.png

    Edited by Thundery wintry showers
    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Broxbourne, Herts
  • Weather Preferences: Snow snow and snow
  • Location: Broxbourne, Herts
    On 25/02/2020 at 07:35, Weather-history said:

     

     

     

    When the winds developed with a more easterly component, I don't think  the snow showers were as widespread as suggested in the forecasts for the SE.

    We had snow showers when it was supposed to be mostly dry! There were far more snow showers inland than predicted, Birmingham got 4cm. 

    We had snow showers on the Saturday, Sunday and the Monday.

    Almost a bit of a rude word in that middle one from Michael...

    • Like 1
    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    On 26/02/2020 at 01:38, Thundery wintry showers said:

    Yes, I think the north of England had a day of wintry showers on 20 December 1991 and some frontal snow on 17 February 1992, both of which had lying snow to near sea level for a time, but that was it.  Rain turned to snow as it spread east on 4 January 1993 and there were snow showers on the 11th/12th associated with the Braer storm (and very disruptive snowstorms further north across the Scottish Lowlands).  October 1992 had some unusually early snowfalls in places but not much on the ground at low levels.  Otherwise the winters of 1991/92 and 1992/93 were pretty much snowless until 27 February 1993.

    Regarding Flakey's recollections, the one thing that casts doubt on the suggestion of late Feb/early Mar 1993 was that the heavy snow for the SE was forecast to come from showers off the North Sea rather than from a system moving through the English Channel.  I see there is a mention of a system moving in from the SE on the 1st on the 28 February forecasts, but it still doesn't match up with the recollection.  Mac_SE's recollections sound like they probably were this event though.  Memories do sometimes play tricks so it's nonetheless possible that this might be the event that Flakey is remembering.

    It won't have been 15 February 1994 as London definitely got snow on that occasion, but it's possible that it could have been overnight 21/22 February 1994, when a frontal system passed just to the south of London giving snow to Kent and Sussex.  It's not played up much on the BBC forecasts (Michael Fish had the system down as very marginal as to whether it got as far north as London) but ITN could possibly have over-egged it.  Fronts did push in from the south-west late on the 22nd and over the following few days, giving widespread snow in the Midlands and northern England, but turned quickly to rain in the south.

    image.png

    You know what, I think it may well have been Feb 21/22 1994. As you say the memory does play tricks, but I’m certain the forecaster the next day said the system had instead dived into France. I remember the newsreader questioning him about it. I would have been 9 so that would account for the poor recollection. Thanks for such an in-depth answer.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Ludgershall, Wiltshire
  • Location: Ludgershall, Wiltshire
    8 hours ago, Timmytour said:

    Almost a bit of a rude word in that middle one from Michael...

    ‘We can’t rule out some shi snow showers’! ??

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Croydon
  • Location: Croydon

    I remember the snow event on 21/22 Feb 1994. It did snow in North Surrey and South London. I think it was caused by mild weather trying to approach from the south west during a cold spell.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
    On 27/02/2020 at 21:07, Flakey said:

    For what it’s worth, I *think* the forecast was on London Tonight, which would have made it a weekday evening. 

    That increases the likelihood that it was 21/22 February 1994 rather than 27/28 February 1993 - 21 February 1994 was a Monday, whereas the 27/28 February 1993 cold snap coincided with a weekend. 

    Here's the forecasts for that period:

     

    Edited by Thundery wintry showers
    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: NR Worthing SE Coast
  • Location: NR Worthing SE Coast
    On 24/02/2020 at 20:33, Flakey said:

    Hi guys,

    I’m trying to pin down a really vague memory from the early 90s - I’d guess maybe 1993 or 94 - of a failed snow event where the tv forecasts got it totally wrong.

    I remember seeing the ITN weather one evening and them forecasting snow for London from a system going through the channel. I went to bed excited and woke up to - nothing. Not a flake. I remember the next day the forecasters explaining the system had gone further south than anticipated, into France.

    Can anyone shed some light on this? Are there any forecasts etc? 

    It was towards the end of the cold spell in January 1985.

    The met office had just introduced this mega new computer and it was forecasting a major blizzard for the South and South east,with people told to keep shovels in the car in case they got stuck.

    What happened was the low tracked further South in the end and clipped parts of Dorset giving them a fair bit of snow before diving South into Northern France

    Their is a forecast on youtube with Bill giles talking about the low giving snow to Souhern parts of England a couple of days before it was expected to hit,but I can’t find it at the moment. and also a clip on youtube from South today talking about the snow in Dorset from the system.

    The cold spell ended soon after..

    Found the forecast 

     

     

    E3370BB2-B0D6-4C3C-BEE4-213F57A1B39A.png

    8E5CFDD4-5002-4CBA-BD07-78AEC15196D2.png

    Edited by SLEETY
    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: Ludgershall, Wiltshire
  • Location: Ludgershall, Wiltshire
    13 hours ago, SLEETY said:

    It was towards the end of the cold spell in January 1985.

    The met office had just introduced this mega new computer and it was forecasting a major blizzard for the South and South east,with people told to keep shovels in the car in case they got stuck.

    What happened was the low tracked further South in the end and clipped parts of Dorset giving them a fair bit of snow before diving South into Northern France

    Their is a forecast on youtube with Bill giles talking about the low giving snow to Souhern parts of England a couple of days before it was expected to hit,but I can’t find it at the moment. and also a clip on youtube from South today talking about the snow in Dorset from the system.

    The cold spell ended soon after..

    Found the forecast 

     

     

    E3370BB2-B0D6-4C3C-BEE4-213F57A1B39A.png

    8E5CFDD4-5002-4CBA-BD07-78AEC15196D2.png

    I remember this well!  Teachers at school were talking about the forecast blizzards overnight and I was very excited when I went to bed!  However, I was bitterly disappointed to wake up to nothing and apparently said I wouldn’t listen to the weathermen again as ‘they didn’t tell the truth!’  That was on a Friday and the cold spell broke down on the following Sunday/Monday.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: SE London
  • Location: SE London
    On 02/03/2020 at 14:06, Don said:

    I remember this well!  Teachers at school were talking about the forecast blizzards overnight and I was very excited when I went to bed!  However, I was bitterly disappointed to wake up to nothing and apparently said I wouldn’t listen to the weathermen again as ‘they didn’t tell the truth!’  That was on a Friday and the cold spell broke down on the following Sunday/Monday.

    Great bit of nostalgia there and remember it well, but that’s not the event in question which was definitely early nineties. 

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: NR Worthing SE Coast
  • Location: NR Worthing SE Coast
    On 05/03/2020 at 12:51, Mac_SE said:

    Great bit of nostalgia there and remember it well, but that’s not the event in question which was definitely early nineties. 

    Well why aren't you posting EXACTLY when it happened then as you obviously know the date it occurred. 

    Edited by SLEETY
    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Posted
  • Location: SE London
  • Location: SE London
    14 hours ago, SLEETY said:

    Well why aren't you posting EXACTLY when it happened then as you obviously know the date it occurred. 

    If you’d read my earlier reply of 24th Feb I don’t actually know EXACTLY when it was. But I  do know it was early nineties because I remember my youngest - born in ‘91 - being in the car with me when the forecast was on and I told her she’d wake up to snow. Maybe in future read the thread before jumping on the caps... 

    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    On 07/03/2020 at 09:27, SLEETY said:

    Well why aren't you posting EXACTLY when it happened then as you obviously know the date it occurred. 

    It wasn’t that one. I would have been less than a year old.

    • Like 1
    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    • 2 weeks later...
    Posted
  • Location: Efford, Plymouth
  • Weather Preferences: Misty Autumn Mornings, Thunderstorms and snow
  • Location: Efford, Plymouth

    Funny how I remember that snowfall from January 1985 as being rather successful here in Devon- in fact theres a picture at parents taken at that time of me and my Mum in the snow in the local park!

     

    Interestingly, I'd call the snowstorm that was forecast for Sunday 18th December 2010 as a failed channel low down here. It looked like it was going to dump a lot on us in Devon and Cornwall, but it wasn't as productive as Matt Taylor thought it could be on the Countryfile forecast for us.

    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Create an account or sign in to comment

    You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create an account

    Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

    Register a new account

    Sign in

    Already have an account? Sign in here.

    Sign In Now
    ×
    ×
    • Create New...