DURHAM WEATHER FORECAST
Durham Weather Forecast for The Next 7 Days

2011 Annual Summary

Following a below-average year in 2010, 2011 was a remarkable transformation: the warmest year on record at Durham, equal to 2004 at 9.96°C (to two decimal places) but 10°C to all intents and purposes! There was a remarkably low number of ground frosts, only 78; only 2002 (71), 2003 (77) and 2004 (67) have had fewer. Only 2000 (19) and 2002 (16) have had fewer ground frosts than 2011 (20) in the second half of the year. Nine months were below average in 2011 so the low rainfall total for the year was no surprise. The low total was not exceptional, however: it was only the 47th driest year at Durham in 162 years. The highest daily total of the year was on 6th August when 36.2mm was recorded (I was at a friend’s wedding that day and I can categorically state that it was the wettest wedding i’ve EVER been to). 2011 had slightly more than average hours of bright sunshine, but both 2006 and 2009 had higher totals. The sunniest day of the year turned out to be 26th May; this late spring day was better than anything that followed during the summer!

http://community.dur.ac.uk/durham.weather/weather-data-2011-2015/the-weather-at-durham-in-2011/

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University

2010 Yearly Summary

For the year as a whole, mean air temperature in 2010 (8.3°C) was below average (8.6°C, 1961 – 1990) for the first time since 1996 when the same mean was recorded. It was the 62nd coldest year since 1850, so not in the lowest quartile. The 2010 mean was the coldest for any 12 – month period since the “year” ending in January 1997. It was the first calendar year since 1985 when there were 7 months below mean air temperature. It is of interest that the decadal running mean (9.5°C, 2001 – 2010), having fallen a little from the record high of three years ago, still remains the 5th highest for any 10 – year period since 1850. Rainfall was nearly 100mm above average, 129th wettest in 161 years; even so, the previous two years were wetter. Sunshine was 6% below average, the dullest year since 2004. It is some measure of the disappointing amount of bright sunshine during 2010 that the sunniest day was 1st April!

http://community.dur.ac.uk/durham.weather/weather-data-2006-2010/the-weather-at-durham-in-2010/

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University

2009 Yearly Summary

Notwithstanding a cold December, the year as a whole saw an average mean air temperature of 9.5°C, the 14th equal warmest in 160 years. In this decade only 2000, 2001 and 2008 have been colder. All years this decade are in the top 21 warmest out of 160 years. One very cold month right at the end of 2009 could not disguise the fact that this has been the warmest decade on record at Durham since 1850. Given the exceptionally wet July and November, this meant that 2009 as a whole was also well above average in terms of rainfall total, even though eight months were below average. It was the 32nd wettest year at Durham since 1850 (749.1mm). This decade only 2000 (873.2mm) and 2008 (817.1mm) have been wetter. There were 176 rain days – the most since 2000. 2009 was the sunniest year since 2003, just above average.

http://community.dur.ac.uk/durham.weather/weather-data-2006-2010/the-weather-at-durham-in-2009/

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University

2008 Yearly Summary

2008 was the equal coldest year (with 2001) at Durham since 1996 (9.3°C). The 12-month average (9.25 to two decimal places) is the lowest since October 2001, and 1.51°C below the maximum 12-month running mean in May 2007. Even so, it was still the 19th warmest year at Durham since 1850! Daytime temperatures were disappointing, in August especially; nevertheless, the maximum for the year (26.1°C on 27th August) was higher than the maximum in 2007. It was a wet year, the wettest year since 2000 with the most rain days since 2002. The total sunshine was a just little above average.

http://community.dur.ac.uk/durham.weather/weather-data-2006-2010/the-weather-at-durham-in-2008/

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University

2007 Yearly Summary

2007 was the 4th warmest year at Durham since records began in 1850 (9.83°C), equalling the 1949 and value and only exceeded by 2003 (9.88°C), 2006 (9.94°C) and 2004 (9.96°C). The 12-month running mean was above 10°C from January until September; the ‘year’ from June 2006 to May 2007 was the warmest on record at 10.77°C. The mean maximum for the year (13.6°C) was the 8th highest (since 1900) while the mean minimum (6.1°C) was 4th equal highest. Remarkably, the mean air temperature did not fall below the 1961-1990 average in any month (Using the 1971-200 averages, July, August and December were below average).

Rainfall, hours of bright sunshine and wind speed were all just below average for the year as a whole. Seasonally, spring was the warmest on record and winter the 3rd warmest; there was also the 12th wettest summer on record. The Davis index of summer weather showed that Durham experienced its 12th worst summer since 1886.

http://community.dur.ac.uk/durham.weather/weather-data-2006-2010/the-weather-at-durham-in-2007/

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University

Notable in July 2007: A Thunderstorm and torrential rain caused widespread disruption on 20th. It flooded Bowburn Community Centre and some nearby properties with water and sewage, up to 3 feet deep in the boiler room. It also flooded Durham University Library and the car park at The Gates Shopping Centre. The A177 was closed in both directions from Shincliffe to Bowburn.

2006 Yearly Summary

2006 was a remarkable warm year, the second warmest on record at Durham since 1850, only a negligible 0.02°C cooler than 2004. Every month except March was above average, with the year as a whole 1.4°C above the 1961-1990 mean. The warmest ten years at Durham are now as follows (to two decimal places):

Year and average temperature

2004 – 9.96°
2006 – 9.94°
2003 – 9.88°
1949 – 9.83°
2002 – 9.80°
1990 – 9.75°
2005 – 9.71°
1945 – 9.66°
1999 – 9.61°
1989 – 9.58°

Given the length of the Durham temperature record, it is remarkable that two months in 2006, July and September, proved to be the warmest on record, previous records being broken by a wide margin. Rainfall in 2006 was below average, and would have been an exceptionally dry year except for the wet months of May, November and December. Overall, it was only the 42nd driest year on record, dry but not remarkably so. Despite the warmth and below average rainfall, hours of bright sunshine were only just above average.

The extreme warmth of recent years is most remarkable: only five months in the last sixty have fallen below the monthly mean (calculated for the period 1961-1990) and even if the 1971-2000 means are used instead, this only increases to seven. Even if there remains debate about the exact causes, evidence of global warming in Durham is now unarguable.

http://community.dur.ac.uk/durham.weather/weather-data-2006-2010/the-weather-at-durham-in-2006/

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University

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