Today’s persistent rain clocked up 21.4mm at 2230, equalling the rainfall total for the whole of July – and it’s still raining, though it’s easing off now. We can already be sure that August’s rainfall total will be greater than July’s, and the garden did need it.
July’s weather split neatly into two halves – the first fortnight or so was cool and cloudy, but it became warmer from the 16th onwards and we saw temperature records broken on the 19th. The warm weather offset the cool start to the month, and the average temperature of 17.2C was about what we would expect for July. Rainfall was low at 21.4mm, making this our driest July since the station was set up. It was also our windiest July on record, with a stiff south-westerly breeze for much of the month.
Atlantic low pressure systems dominated the first two weeks of July, bringing a good deal of cloud and only a couple of sunny days. As we got to the middle of the middle of the month it looked as if it might be a contender for the coolest July ever, but high pressure over northern France pushed those lows north from the 15th onwards and the weather began to warm up as the skies cleared. On the 17th much of the UK was basking in sunshine, but the sea is still cool and a sea mist developed in the Bristol Channel and moved inland during the afternoon, making it cold and damp here. It wasn’t until the following morning that the mist burned off, and we got our first proper taste of summer on the 18th.
The high moved off to our east on the 19th, and combined with a low pressure system over the Atlantic to draw continental air over the UK in a hot south-easterly breeze. We recorded a new record high temperature of 32.4C during the afternoon, and average daytime and nightime temperature reached new highs as well.
The high pressure moved off over eastern Europe on the 20th and the procession of Atlantic lows took over again, with a warm and rather humid airflow for the rest of the month keeping temperatures about normal and bringing some frontal rain during the last week.