Met Office figures show 2014 was UK’s warmest since 1910

Provisional full year figures for 2014 show it is the UK’s warmest and fourth wettest year in records dating back to 1910.

By Guardian Reporter
Monday, 5th January 2015, 2:41 pm

It is also the warmest year on record in the Central England Temperature series, which dates back to 1659 and is the world’s longest running instrumental temperature series.

The UK’s mean temperature for the year is 9.9 °C, which is 1.1 °C above the long-term (1981-2010) average and beats the previous record of 9.7 °C set in 2006.

This year’s record means that eight of the UK’s top 10 warmest years have happened since 2002.

Looking in more detail across the UK, it was the warmest year on record for all countries and regions apart from Northern Ireland - which had its joint third warmest year behind 2007 and 2006.

Despite the record breaking warmth, no months through the year saw records for temperature - instead each month was consistently warm, with only August seeing below average temperatures.

It was also marginally the warmest year on record in the CET series from 1659 with a mean temperature of 10.93 °C narrowly ahead of the previous record of 10.87 °C set in 2006.

The number of air frosts for the UK was also provisionally lowest in a series from 1961.

This year’s provisional rainfall total of 1297.1 mm is the fourth highest total on record for the UK in the series dating back to 1910, meaning five of the UK’s top six wettest years have happened since 2000.

It was also within the 20 wettest years in the England and Wales Precipitation series which dates back to 1766. However, no individual regions had their wettest year on record.

A large contribution to the high annual rainfall total came from very wet weather in January and February. May, October and November were also wetter than average and August was especially wet across Northern Scotland.

Most other months were drier than average in most areas, and September was the driest in the series from 1910 for the UK.

The most notable weather events of the year were the winter storms of January and February which brought damaging winds, inland and coastal flooding.

In comparison, the rest of the year was relatively quiet. On 10th August ex-hurricane Bertha brought strong winds, heavy rain and flooding to north-east Scotland and a major winter storm affected the north of the UK in early December - notable but not exceptional for the time of year.

Summer 2014 brought some fine weather - particularly in June and July. There were no major heat-waves but several instances of torrential summer downpours causing localised flash-flooding, for example across parts of England on 19 to 20 July.

You can explore more about 2014’s weather and climate on the Met Office’s climate pages.