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Weather watch: record temperatures last month


May 2024 brought yet another month with record breaking temperatures, despite the chilly feel to the winds, writes Ian Thomas.

The first week saw rain falling every day but with temperatures on the climb. Indeed, 40 per cent of May’s total rainfall fell by the 7th. By and large, the weather then settled down and with the exception of the 14th, very little rain fell until the 22nd.

From the 8th, high pressure asserted itself and the mercury responded to a maximum daytime high of 26C (79f) on the 12th. However, with humid continental air in place, thunderstorms broke out but were to the west of Dursley and Cam. Parts of the Forest Of Dean, Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Shropshire saw some intense downpours, falling at a rate of 85mm per hour at its most intense.

The high pressure gave way to more normal Atlantic westerlies and with it came more rain. The 22nd was a very wet day with a full 21mm (0.83inches) falling by 3pm, and a cool 15.7c (59f) maximum temperature. More wet weather over the Bank Holiday on both the 26th and 27th, although some of the rain was overnight into the Monday, clearing up to a drier day.

After this, high pressure came close to our shores, but not right over us, but enough to settle things down into June. Overall. a total of 79mm (3.11inches) fell during May, which is average for this month. The mean temperature panned out at 14.68C (58f), making it not only our warmest May on record but the whole of Great Britain just the same. Many places recorded their warmest spring but for us, it was the 2nd warmest spring at 11.03c (52f). Spring 2011 (only just!!) takes gold at 11.14C (52f)..

The stats:

Coldest Day…11.5c (52f) May 3rd..

Warmest Day….26c (79f May 12th..

Coldest Night…6.3c (42f) May 3rd-4th..

Warmest Night…12.4c (55f) May 26th-27th..

Daytime Mean…19.82c (67f)

Nighttime Mean…9.54c (49f)

Monthly Mean…14.68c (58f)

Monthly Rainfall…79mm (3.11inches)

Spring Mean…11.03c (52f)

Spring Rainfall…284mm (11.18inches)

Sunshine Hours…185 Hours (Met-Office)

In the past:

Severe thunderstorms affected Dursley and Cam in the May`s of 1965 and 1967 resulting in flooding and lightning strikes. Indeed, a bungalow in Everlands was struck and the roof set alight on May 17th, 1965, and hailstones lay five inches deep. The Yew Tree inn was inundated with mud and water from the fields across the road, and some had their TV aerials struck, all in the space of 40 minutes.

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